CHICAGO, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Business schools are making more progress in adding minority professors to their faculties, The PhD Project reported today. Representation of African-Americans, Native Americans and Hispanic Americans on business school faculties has risen 50% in the five years since The PhD Project started in 1994 to attract and encourage more minorities to become business professors. Minority faculty representation increased from 294 in 1994 to 440 in 1999. And because 373 additional minorities are now earning doctorates to become professors, the minority professor population will more than double from 1994 levels when the 373 complete their studies in 2004 or earlier, The PhD Project said. The increase in minority faculty was reported as The PhD Project holds its annual conference for prospective new business doctoral students in Chicago. The PhD Project is a partnership of universities, prominent corporations, academic and professional organizations, and foundations. It aims to create more minority professors by urging successful African-American, Hispanic- American and Native American business executives to leave corporate jobs, and study to become business school professors. "Corporate America and the academic community have long wanted to have more professors of color standing in front of business school classrooms," said Bernard J. Milano, executive director and trustee of the KPMG Foundation, creator and lead sponsor of The PhD Project. "Now, after five years of our actively recruiting and supporting future professors, diversity on the faculty is becoming more of a reality." "More minority faculty role models and mentors mean more minority students will see business as a viable career option. By getting more people of color into these highly influential teaching posts, The PhD Project adds incentive for young minorities to study business and then work in corporate America, helping to diversify it," Mr. Milano added. The 1999 total of 440 minority business professors is a population that took decades to amass, yet it still represents less than five percent of all business faculty. The bulk of the five-year-old PhD Project's impact will be felt in the years to come, as more of the 373 current doctoral students complete the five-year path to a doctorate. All 373 minorities now earning business doctorates participate in The PhD Project's Doctoral Students Associations, whose members have a dropout rate of less than 5 percent. It takes about five years for a student to complete a program and earn the degree. Doctoral students reported that their minority students have told them they are considering business careers, or pursuing specific fields, because of the impact of seeing a minority teacher of business at their school for the first time. Other Ph.D. candidates said they had introduced topics relating to diversity or ethnic marketing into the curriculum. More than 400 minority executives are attending this year's conference, Nov. 11-12, at the Hyatt O'Hare in Rosemont, IL to consider making the switch from a successful career in corporate America to the scholarly life of a business school professor. They will learn all about what it takes to enter into a Ph.D. program: What is the process? What will it cost? What kind of funding is available? What are the curriculum opportunities? What are the benefits of earning a Ph.D.? Minority business professionals will also meet with representatives of leading corporations, as well as more than 75 of the nation's most prestigious business schools, to discuss the value of giving up their corporate jobs and pursuing teaching careers at a business school. Many of the corporate sponsors will see some of their own talented executives, who are role models for future generations, leave their positions to pursue a Ph.D. Attendees will learn careers in academia are often viable, challenging and rewarding-and a great opportunity to impact the lives of thousands of future minority executives and business leaders. They will hear how earning a Ph.D. doesn't always cost money -- typically tuition is waived and there are stipends for research or teaching, while business school professors are surprisingly well-paid -- earning as much as $100,000 a year. The coalition of corporations and academic institutions that support The PhD Project include: The KPMG Foundation, Graduate Management Admission Council, The Citigroup Foundation, AACSB, Chrysler Corporation Fund, Ford Motor Company, Institute of Management Accountants, James S. Kemper Foundation, Abbott Laboratories, Fannie Mae Foundation, Merrill Lynch & Co. Foundation, Inc., Texaco, AICPA, Robert K. Elliott, Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, Inc., Mobil Corporation, State Street Corporation and Union Carbide Foundation In addition, more than 75 colleges and universities contribute $1,500 each year to the Project, and send representatives to its annual conference to recruit prospective Ph.D. students. Total contributions approximate $1.6 million per year. For more information call, 1-888-2GET-AphD or visit The PhD Project web-site, http://www.phdproject.com.
SOURCE The PhD Project