Committee on Diversity Initiatives Meeting: Models and Strategies for Building Diversity and Inclusion in Toxicology

Diversity and inclusion in science are more than a strategic goal for universities, government labs, and industry. Recent findings demonstrate that diverse scientific teams produce more innovative science and more highly cited publications. However, many institutions struggle with implementing effective programs to increase representation by women, underrepresented minorities, and those from countries with fewer educational and scientific resources. This session brings together leading experts from the Society of Toxicology, the National Institutes of Health, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County's Meyerhoff Scholars Program to share successful models and strategies for recruitment and retention of STEM trainees and career development toward independent research careers. The topics discussed include (1) an overview of the SOT Undergraduate Diversity Program’s 30 years of experience in recruiting new toxicology trainees and the Committee on Diversity Initiatives’ efforts to expand global opportunities in toxicology training, (2) the NIH perspective on supporting career success in biomedical research where the number of underrepresented minority trainees is increasing while success at the early career stage is lagging, (3) the successful implementation of the Meyerhoff Scholars Program, which encourages positive peer pressure among highly capable underrepresented minorities and structured mentoring toward advanced degrees in STEM fields, and (4) guidance on successfully navigating a career transition from academe to industry. The session concluded with questions from the audience and a general discussion of inclusion and diversity in toxicology training and mentoring.

Primary Endorser: Education Committee
Endorser(s): Committee on Diversity Initiatives
Endorser(s): Hispanic Organization of Toxicologists Special Interest Group