Promoting diversity at all levels

diversity image

Our students and faculty members participate in outreach and training activities to promote diversity.

Gaining research experiences

Undergraduate students gain invaluable research experience with our faculty and their research associates through:

Reaching out to young people

We are passionate about outreach and reaching K-12th grade students from diverse backgrounds.

  • Energy and U 
    • We bring more than 13,000 students to the University every year for a fun event that is packed with demonstrations geared toward teaching the first law of thermodynamics.
    • The program is designed to excite students about the idea of coming to college and pursuing a career in science and engineering.
    • A partnership with the Department of Theatre Arts & Dance is giving the show a higher degree of professionalism.
  • Chemists in the Classroom 
    • We conduct age- and grade-level specific chemistry demonstrations and discuss chemistry careers in local schools and at community venues.
    • Teachers receive materials and advice.
  • Chemists in the Library
    • Volunteers bring chemistry demonstrations to Minneapolis/Saint Paul area public libraries.
  • Cool Chemistry
    • We bring middle school girls to our laboratories for this annual event, where they meet our female chemists who lead them through hands-on experiments.
  • University of the Prairie
    • We bring hands-on science to middle- and high-school students living in rural Minnesota.
  • Summer experiences
    • We participate in the College of Science & Engineering's summer camps offering middle- and high-school students opportunities to learn about science careers.
    • Students get hands-on introductions to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.
    • We offer one-day modules on polymers and solar energy.

Reaching out to science teachers

School science teachers are our best allies for promoting diversity in STEM fields. Many of our research centers offer summer programs for teachers where they learn about specialized topics, ranging from bio-plastics to microscopy and nanotechnology. Some of our faculty members have long-standing relationships with teachers in the metropolitan area, and those teachers often bring their students to campus for hands-on activities and demonstrations.

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning, and Allied

We are committed to providing an inviting and welcoming environment for all students. Annually, our department hosts Ally trainings for our students and faculty.

Several of our scientists are members of MN Queer Science, a network for the GLBTQA community in STEM fields at the University.

  • MN Queer Science has a strong outreach component, visiting student groups at local high schools to talk about research, science careers, experiences as LGBTQ scientists, and choosing and attending a college, and to perform exciting chemistry demonstrations.
    • High school students come to campus to consult about their self-designed science projects.
    • MN Queer Science discussions touch on analysis techniques common in other fields that inform chemistry-specific research endeavors, which have led to interdisciplinary research collaborations.

Contact

    • Diversity Committee
    • 139 Smith Hall, 207 Pleasant St SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
    • Professor Lee Penn, Diversity Committee Chair
    • rleepenn@umn.edu
    • (612) 626-4680