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NIH Green-Lights $241M Cluster Hiring Program

February 3, 2020

A top advisory group for the National Institutes of Health has approved a $241 million cluster hiring initiative to support such goals as research in emerging areas and faculty diversity, Science reported. The nine-year program, called Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation, or FIRST, will help about a dozen universities and medical schools pay for 10 or more new professors each. These new hires won’t all be from underrepresented groups, most likely, but must all have a proven record of working to make science more inclusive, according to Science. Cluster hiring is becoming more popular but remains relatively understudied. FIRST will fund a team to conduct a program review to help generate more data as to -- in the words of the NIH’s chief diversity officer Hannah Valentine -- "what works and why."

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Colleen Flaherty

Colleen Flaherty, Reporter, covers faculty issues for Inside Higher Ed. Prior to joining the publication in 2012, Colleen was military editor at the Killeen Daily Herald, outside Fort Hood, Texas. Before that, she covered government and land use issues for the Greenwich Time and Hersam Acorn Newspapers in her home state of Connecticut. After graduating from McGill University in Montreal in 2005 with a degree in English literature, Colleen taught English and English as a second language in public schools in the Bronx, N.Y. She earned her M.S.Ed. from City University of New York Lehman College in 2008 as part of the New York City Teaching Fellows program. 

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