Teaching to Increase Diversity and Equity in STEM (TIDES)

Through a generous $4.9M grant from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, AAC&U has launched its newest STEM initiative, TIDES: Teaching to Increase Diversity and Equity in STEM.

Project Overview

The overall goal of this three-year initiative is to increase the learning outcomes and retention of students historically underrepresented in the computer/information sciences and related STEM disciplines. The project will pursue two specific aims:

  • Develop and implement curricula that will enhance underrepresented STEM student interest, competencies and retention rates; and
  • Empower STEM faculty to adopt culturally sensitive pedagogies and sustain the necessary changes in practice required for relevant and inclusive STEM teaching.

AAC&U is dedicated to promoting high-quality learning, accelerating broad-scale systemic innovation to advance diversity, and advancing inquiry across all liberal arts and sciences disciplines.  In its recently expanded mission, AAC&U also seeks to make liberal education and inclusive excellence the foundation for institutional purpose and educational practice in higher education. This STEM initiative is integrally connected to all of these tenets of higher education reform, and is expected to build capacity in higher education toward achieving his goal, as well as create a national community of faculty leaders committed to and effective in developing supportive and empowering environments for students traditionally underrepresented in STEM.


About the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust

The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust aspires to improve lives by supporting effective nonprofits in a variety of selected areas. Since 2008, when the Trust began its active grantmaking, it has committed more than $900 million to a wide range of charitable organizations. Through its National Education Program, the Trust views education as a lever to advance both American economic competitiveness and individual social mobility. In K-12, the Trust focuses on ensuring all students graduate high school prepared for college or careers by supporting teacher effectiveness and the adoption and implementation of high academic standards. In postsecondary education, the Trust is primarily interested in increasing the number of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) graduates who can participate in high growth sectors of the economy.  The Trust also focuses on policy levers that improve postsecondary completion, particularly for underrepresented populations. For more information, please visit www.helmsleytrust.org.

Program Goals

The overall goal of this three-year initiative is to increase the learning outcomes and retention of students historically underrepresented in the computer/information sciences and related STEM disciplines.  The project will pursue two specific aims:

  • Develop and implement curricula that will enhance underrepresented STEM student interest, competencies and retention rates; and
  • Empower STEM faculty to adopt culturally sensitive pedagogies and sustain the necessary changes in practice required for relevant and inclusive STEM teaching.