Carnegie Mellon University

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Neuroscience Institute at Carnegie Mellon University strives to be a community that is academically and intellectually rigorous, as well as being diverse, inclusive and respectful to all of its members. We aspire to promote a collegial professional environment in which all individuals can thrive and do their best work with community support and free from harassment, intimidation or disrespect.

The Neuroscience Institute is overseen by both the Mellon College of Science (MCS) and the Dietrich School of Humanities and Social Sciences, both of which value Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Specifically, our efforts align with the values and goals outlined by Dietrich College.


We understand and value that every individual is unique. We see this uniqueness shaped by race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs and other life experiences and ideologies. 


At CMU, we are intentional about eliminating barriers that have prevented full participation and increased access to resources and networks for underrepresented groups across our student, faculty and staff populations.


We believe that every person at CMU should feel as though they belong here. We are learning how to involve more unique perspectives and actively invite participation from historically underrepresented groups in order to make our community a better place for all. 

Progress Highlights

Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

Each spring, the NI seeks diverse, creative, and collaborative early-career applicants for its Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. NI Fellows receive an annual stipend of $55,000, full benefits, and a professional development fund of up to $5,000 per year. The program seeks to bring new perspectives and voices to our community; researchers already in CMU laboratories are ineligible. Up to two fellowships (renewable annually, typically for two years) are awarded per year.

Faculty Hiring

The NI is in the process of developing a set of strategies to transform the culture and climate of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) to make it more diverse, equitable, and inclusive. We aim to transform how CMU defines and finds diverse talent, by engaging with trainees from under-represented groups before they are on the job market and implementing best practices in hiring and recruitment that embed diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) principles in every aspect of our processes.

Three cores in our initiative support changing how CMU connects to a more diverse pool of talent in order to recruit a less homogeneous faculty; supports faculty who have been hired so that they succeed, regardless of their backgrounds, identities, or research topics; and validates our processes in faculty recruitment, hiring, and development.

CMU Rales Fellowship

We participate in the CMU Rales Fellow Program.  The program is dedicated to developing a diverse community of STEM leaders from underrepresented and under-resourced backgrounds by eliminating cost as a barrier to education. Learn more about this program for master's and Ph.D. students. Learn more

Outside Partnerships

Research Opportunities for Undergraduate Students

We advertise research opportunities are for undergraduate students studying neuroscience at CMU. The opportunities may be paid or un-paid on a case-by-case basis, and some may qualify for work-study. By highlighting these research positions on our website, we aim to surface the opportunities that would otherwise remain implicit and available only to students who are already emboldened to seek them.

We also are making plans to implement training for undergraduate students about how to approach faculty to pursue opportunities such as these. This training will come in the form of presentations that will be presented to students in seminar courses and/or made accessible online.

Past DEI Initiatives

Read about our past DEI Initiatives


How can we do better? 

We welcome creative suggestions for how we can make the Neuroscience Institute a more inclusive community. 

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