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University of Pittsburgh
Fiscal Year: 
Recipient Type: 
Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program
Program Categories: 
RE-Lifelong Learning - Research

A team of researchers from the University of Pittsburgh, University of California, Irvine, Queens College, and The Pennsylvania State University, will explore how underrepresented minority students develop and maintain a sense of community and belonging within cohort-based recruitment programs. The team will also look at how these experiences compare to participants' sense of community in their graduate programs and workplaces. The project will also provide recommendations for how the community developed in recruitment programs can be extended and scaled to a model of lifelong learning and support. Through a pilot with the iSchool Inclusion Institute (i3 - a cohort-based recruitment program), the project team will develop and conduct three qualitative case studies in three LIS, cohort-based recruitment programs geared towards underrepresented students: i3, Spectrum, and Knowledge River. A comparative analysis of participants' experiences across case studies will enable researchers to identify the mechanisms that contribute to developing and maintaining a sense of community. These findings will be translated into a model for recruitment and retention that specifically addresses isolation and gaps in support.

Project Proposals: