Montana State University has been selected to participate in a new national initiative designed to increase the diversity and inclusivity of our faculty. Please review the draft of our Faculty Diversity Plan and provide feedback.

Fifteen public research universities were selected to participate in the inaugural three-year effort to help those schools reform their recruitment, hiring and retention practices. The Aspire Alliance’s Institutional Change (IChange) network aims to ultimately increase the participation and success of undergraduate STEM students from underrepresented groups. Aspire is funded by the National Science Foundation. It is led by the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities and the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning at the University of Wisconsin–Madison with the involvement of several additional universities.

MSU's IChange Team is led by a diverse group of faculty members and administrators. Members of the IChange Team are listed below.

Abbie Richards Associate Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering; past chair of Faculty Senate
Ariel Donohue Senior Diversity and Inclusion Officer
Becca Belou Senior Data Scientist, Office of Planning and Analysis
Brett Gunnink Dean of the Norm Asbjornson College of Engineering
Chris Fastnow Director, Office of Planning and Analysis
Connie Chang Assistant Professor, Chemical and Biological Engineering
Craig Ogilvie Dean of the Graduate School
David Claudio Associate Professor of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering
Dean Adams Director, Center for Faculty Excellence
Diane Debinski Department Head, Ecology
Jeannette Grey Gilbert (represented by Gerre Maillet) Chief Human Resources Officer
Mary Cloninger Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Michael Babcock Department Head, Earth Science and Professor, Psychology
Nicol Rae Dean of the College of Letters and Science
Nika Stoop Grant Training Coordinator, Center for Faculty Excellence
Robert Mokwa Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost
Sreekala Bajwa (represented by Tracy Dougher) Vice President and Dean of Agriculture
Tami Eitle Vice Provost for Curriculum, Accreditation and Assessment
Vanessa Simonds Associate Professor, Health and Human Development


To learn more about the IChange initiative, visit

MSU Selected to Participate in National Effort to Develop More Inclusive and Diverse STEM Faculty

Aspire Alliance Institutional Change Initiative