SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP)–Mount Holyoke College will receive a grant to support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) studies.

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) through the Science Education Program’s Inclusive Excellence 3 (IE3) initiative awarded a six-year $529,500 grant.

“This is fitting recognition for the years of work Mount Holyoke has done to reconfigure its STEM curricula to promote inclusion and increase student success, especially for first-generation students and students of color,” said Provost and Dean of Faculty Lisa Sullivan. “With this level of support from HHMI, we can build on this work and create new supports to attract and retain these students in the STEM fields, launching them into advanced study and successful careers.”

“As participants in a learning community cluster — along with diverse and distinguished schools such as Vanderbilt University, the University of Virginia, and Hartwick College — we can continue learning from others and adopting the best practices for STEM inclusion and success while also contributing our own expertise and successful track record,” added Associate Professor of Chemistry W. Donald Cotter, who is currently heading up the IE3 implementation. Mount Holyoke continues to be the nation’s leading baccalaureate source of women earning doctorates in STEM over a 50-year period.

Mount Holyoke and 103 other four-year colleges and universities will share a total of $60-million in IE3 grant funding. The schools have been divided into seven learning community clusters (LCCs) to maximize learning and influence change.

Mount Holyoke College participates in an LCC with 13 other institutions: Allegheny College; Auburn University at Montgomery; California State University, East Bay, College of the Holy Cross; Emmanuel College (Massachusetts); Hartwick College; Nebraska Wesleyan University; Rollins College; St. John’s University-New York; University of Akron; University of Kansas; University of Virginia; and Vanderbilt University. Mount Holyoke was awarded $30,000 for its participation in an LCC in spring 2021, bringing the total awarded by HHMI to $559,500.