Diversity Programs for Graduate Students

Diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence play a central role in our college’s core mission to prepare our students to live, work, and lead in a global environment. The College of Earth and Mineral Sciences’ broad and multifaceted diversity efforts are inclusive of nationality, ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, ability, veteran status, socio economic status, first generation to college status, and religion and apply to students, faculty, staff.

We aim to provide all students with a world-class education. By fostering an environment that values diversity, we hope to help all students find their place in our college. We highly recommend these important references for our students:

If you have questions about any diversity-related initiative in the college, please contact the EMS Office of the Associate Dean for Educational Equity.

Professional Development

  • Professional Development
    The Office of Graduate Educational Equity Programs in concert with the Graduate School and the academic colleges sponsor professional development opportunities for underrepresented graduate students. These workshops, seminars, and conferences are intended to address issues that may not be addressed in the academic units that can serve as barriers to students’ academic success.

Fellowships and Scholarships Opportunites

  • Bunton-Waller Fellowships
    Bunton-Waller Graduate Awards are assistantships granted to incoming students as part of the University's comprehensive educational opportunity program. The graduate admission application serves as the Bunton-Waller Graduate Awards application. Students must be nominated by their program. The Bunton-Waller Graduate Awards Program competition is open to incoming graduate degree candidates who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Awards from the Bunton-Waller Graduate Awards Program include one-year awards, two-year awards, four-year awards for doctoral students, and top-up awards. Applications will be evaluated on scholarly promise and upon receiving a commitment from the student's graduate major program to support the student.
  • Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program
    The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program (also known as the McNair Scholars Program) is one of 158 such programs nationwide. First established in 1989 and named after Dr. Ronald E. McNair, this program is designed to help academically talented students from traditionally underserved backgrounds reach their potential by earning a doctoral degree.
  • Sloan Scholars
    The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation provides funding for underrepresented students to pursue doctorates in mathematics, science, and engineering. The Sloan Scholars Program specifically targets African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans. All must be U.S. citizens. Students receiving Sloan Foundation grants may use the money to pay for professional travel, research, equipment, books, and to cover many other needs during their doctoral studies. These funds are in addition to any assistantships and fellowships awarded to a student.

Student Organizations for Underrepresented Students

Here is a small sampling of some of the student organizations our students have been involved with during their time at Penn State. Penn State has many more student organizations, which you can browse through in the student organization directory.

Campus Resources for Underrepresented Students

Getting Help or Assistance

Penn State offers numerous resources specifically for underrepresented students seeking assistance with a variety of concerns. We also encourage you to contact staff in our Office for the Associate Dean for Educational Equity, who can work with you and may be able to point you to additional resources.

Diversity among students and faculty is a top priority for the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences and the Office of Educational Equity takes an active role in promoting respect and embracing diversity in the college. Contact Ed Equity staff.