Section: Editorial

Staff Editorial

Faculty diversity key to student success.

This week’s article on the continuing gender gap in academic majors contains a troubling thought, and Associate Professor of Political Science H. Abbie Erler raised the possibility that such gender disparities may discourage female students, intimidated by male-dominated classes, from studying political science. We share Professor Erler’s fear that continuing gender gaps in majors such as political science and women’s and gender studies will discourage students from pursuing fields in which they are underrepresented. Though long-term solutions to this problem must begin years before students arrive at college, Kenyon can do its part by hiring a more diverse faculty. Professors in the economics department are overwhelmingly white and male; professors in political science are almost exclusively white. Though diversity in academic specialization and research expertise offers much value to students, increasing diversity in gender, race and ethnicity (among other factors) can hopefully show more tentative students that there is a place for them in the academic discipline about which they are most passionate. As Kenyon makes significant efforts to increase diversity in its student body, it should do the same for its faculty.

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