January 14, 2021
Mizzou Engineering named four Inclusivity, Diversity and Equity (IDE) Faculty Fellows for the 2021 calendar year. These appointments are part of the College’s enhanced commitment to better serve underrepresented communities and to create a more welcoming environment for all students, faculty and staff.
The four IDE Faculty Fellows for 2021 are:
- Ye Duan, associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science
- Zaichun “Frank” Feng, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering
- Patrick Pinhero, professor of biological, biomedical and chemical engineering
- Kathleen Trauth, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering
“I look forward to working with all four Fellows as we increase our commitment to improve our URM’s success within the College,” Interim Dean Noah Manring said. “I hope our activities this year provide a strong foundation from which to grow our efforts beyond this year.”
Goals of this initiative include improving current retention rates and recruitment for all underrepresented minorities (URM), and to increase URM faculty and staff members.
“I am very excited for this opportunity,” Duan said. “I look forward to participating and contributing in this very important effort to increase recruitment and retention of URMs in our College.”
Although programs were developed to improve engineering URM’s experience previously, these originated from the Dean of Engineering’s office. Appointing faculty fellows now brings those efforts and more to the departmental level.
“I plan to explore new ideas that will help our underrepresented minority students to overcome barriers that frustrate them in MAE,” Feng said. “I will also try to maximize the impact of my existing grant from the NASA Missouri Space Grant Consortium on undergraduate student research with an emphasis on IDE.”
Trauth credits her older sisters’ encouragement and journeys to aspire beyond what was typical for women when she was in high school for being an IDE Faculty Fellow this year.
“I now have a tremendously supportive network within and outside of my family,” Trauth said. “I want to work toward providing that supportive climate for all students, staff and faculty.”
Pinhero looks forward to working with his colleagues to examine IDE issues. He wants to bring about strategies and solutions developed for the College in addition to individual programs and departments.
“I look at this faculty fellowship as an opportunity to help the College examine our internal machinery and processes,” Pinhero said. “We can come up with a plan of action, and metrics, that we can potentially invest in to increase our retention of students from underrepresented minorities in STEM.”
Each Faculty Fellow is expected to lead endeavors in their respective department in addition to supporting the College’s overall initiatives. Trauth will oversee efforts in civil and environmental engineering in addition to industrial and manufacturing systems engineering. Duan will manage efforts in electrical engineering and computer science, and also information technology.