Howard Hughes Medical Institute ie3 Grant Recipient

Howard Hughes Medical Institute ie3 logo

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) named Oglethorpe University as one of the recipients of its third round of inclusive excellence grants Nov. 30, 2022.

Part of the Inclusive Excellence 3 program from HHMI, the grant totals $8 million over six years and will go to a Learning Community Cluster (LCC) of 14 institutions, including Oglethorpe.

Sustaining advances in diversity and inclusion requires a scientific culture that is centered on equity. In science education, increasing the number of individuals from underrepresented backgrounds must go hand in hand with creating inclusive learning environments in which everyone can thrive.

Blanton Tolbert, HHMI’s vice president of science leadership and culture

The LCC will work to achieve HHMI’s stated purpose of fostering a learning community of college and university faculty and administrators who are engaged in the process of increasing their institution’s capacity for inclusion of all students, especially those who are underrepresented in the sciences.

The work of the LCC will focus on improving pedagogical training for STEM faculty, removing barriers in the curricula for STEM students and developing robust peer-peer mentoring programs. Over the next six years Oglethorpe will implement inclusion strategies on campus while participating with the other members of the LCC.

 Dr. Karen Schmeichel is the program director of the current 10-person HHMI team that worked with the rest of the LCC to prepare and submit the final proposal for the grant. Together with Dr. Rhana Gittens Wheeler, special advisor to the President for DEI, Dr. Schmeichel and the DEI Task Force will continue to develop programs for Oglethorpe students and community.

2022-2023 Student Team

  • Deicy Vega Puga
  • Wyaht Franco Lopez
  • Desiree Griffin
  • Ivy Nganga
  • Obi Nwoke


About the Howard Hughes Medical Institute

HHMI is the largest private biomedical research institution in the nation. Its scientists make discoveries that advance human health and our fundamental understanding of biology. It also invests in transforming science education into a creative, inclusive endeavor that reflects the excitement of research. HHMI’s headquarters are in Chevy Chase, Maryland, just outside Washington, DC.