Institute for the Study of Undergraduate Researchers of Color

Coming Soon

The Institute for the Study of Undergraduate Researchers of Color (ISURC) is poised to serve as a national organization established to promote greater access and participation of underserved student populations of color in community engaged undergraduate research programs and experiences. One of its most important mandates will be to promote the development of knowledge, scholarship, and practices focused on supporting and mentoring students of color who participate in undergraduate research programs toward academic and professional success.

This will be achieved through engaging and collaborating with community experts and groups, who will guide student research endeavors and the products to be generated through faculty directed undergraduate research projects.

A second mandate of the Institute will be to prioritize establishing culturally inclusive campus environments and/or sanctuary spaces in which minoritized students of color, who often feel alienated on predominantly white college and university campuses (PWIs), feel more welcome. Understanding how to better create Culturally Inclusive Sanctuary Spaces (CISS) increases the university’s ability to enable all students to be better integrated and to feel valued as they develop a sense of belonging conducive to academic success.

Through the work of the Institute, knowledge and scholarship focused specifically on minoritized and underserved student populations and communities will be broadened and recentered to promote the expansion of access, equity, and diversity within universities and colleges through community engaged undergraduate research, and mentoring programs and practices. The Institute will also pursue scholarship and praxis focused on the importance of culturally relevant and inclusive practices in mentoring and undergraduate programming, curriculums, and activities to develop training programs for community members, faculty, staff, and graduate students.

The Institute will work to achieve these goals through concentrating its efforts in key areas:

  1. Targeted Populations: Promoting the study and practice of community engaged undergraduate research as it applies to underrepresented, minoritized populations of color within the community for students at the college and high school levels.
  2. Dissemination: Establishing a journal, publications, scholarly work, a conference, and other networks of knowledge and resources available to faculty, staff, administrators, and community experts/groups who work with undergraduate researchers of color to aid in the development and implementation of best practices and expanded attention and resources devoted to the necessary adjustments and culturally- relevant and intensive programming necessary to more fully support the success of students of color through serving their communities.
  3. Equity and Access: Expanding undergraduate research participation opportunities and experiences for underserved and minoritized students, especially those from Black, Latinx, and Native and Indigenous student populations.
  4. Establishing Culturally Inclusive Mentoring, Support, and Spaces: Increasing and disseminating scholarly work and data focused on how best to mentor, support, and advocate for students of color involved in these programs through the establishment of Culturally Inclusive Sanctuary Spaces, especially as applied to students at predominantly white colleges and universities, with the goal of ensuring inclusion and equity within undergraduate research programs and practices.
  5. Increasing Impactful Community Engagement: Establishing community collaborations that will serve as the foundation for community engaged undergraduate research projects, as well as pipelines for high school students of color participating and transitioning into college-level research and academic work.
  6. Increasing Funding Resources: Establishing fellowships and grants to promote scholarly/applied research work conducted by faculty, staff, and administrators working with or focused on undergraduate researchers of color.
  7. Increasing and Optimizing Undergraduate Funding Resources for Students of Color: Augmenting the university’s ability to support more students of color engaged in research at higher funding amounts.
  8. Study Abroad, Away, and Exchange Programs that Promote Community Engaged Undergraduate Research: The Institute will also work to establish off-campus and international study opportunities that allow students to practice and expand their undergraduate research skills in various settings.

These goals will be achieved with attention to balancing STEM and humanities undergraduate research programs, activities, curriculums, and initiatives wherever possible to provide students with the broadest range of possibilities, opportunities, and participation in mentoring relationships and research projects and initiatives.

The Institute will work to promote community-engaged undergraduate research by partnering with the IUPUI Office of Community Engagement, the Center for Service and Learning, the School of Education, the Institute for Engaged Learning, and the professional schools around IUPIUI’s campus wherever appropriate.

The Institute for the Study of Undergraduate Researchers of Color will be affiliated with the Center for Africana Studies and Culture but will function as an independent entity. As such, the Institute will have its own executive director, associate director, assistant coordinator, administrative support staff, budget, programming, curriculums, initiatives, and advisory board.

The Director of the Center for Africana Studies and Culture will serve on this board. The Executive Director of the Institute will report to the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts.

Additionally, Institute initiatives will be coordinated with the Africana Studies Program and the Center for Africana Studies and Culture, allowing for enriching synergies and collaborations.

Dr. Ronda Henry Anthony will serve as Executive Director of the Institute for the Study of Undergraduate Researchers of Color. She will also maintain her role as Executive and Founding Director of the Olaniyan Scholars Program. Dr. Patricia Jordan Turley will serve as Associate Director of the Institute and the Olaniyan Scholars Program.

More Info

Contact Rhonda Henry, Executive Director of the Institute.