Five current junior faculty members at Yale were awarded tenure Wednesday afternoon by the Joint Boards of Yale College and the Graduate School.

In a move that Yale College Dean Peter Salovey said “brings diversity on many dimensions” to the University’s senior faculty, political scientist Gregory Huber, historian Jennifer Klein, linguist Maria Pinango, biologist Weimin Zhong and musicologist Michael Veal were awarded tenure.

None of the newly tenured professors were available for comment Wednesday night.

Huber’s work focuses on criminal justice policy and elections in American politics. He graduated in 2001 from Princeton University.

Graduate School Dean and history professor Jon Butler said Klein’s work is unique because it combines analysis of business and labor history to explain the origins of the American welfare system.

“No one has explained the origins of that peculiar and distinctly American system better than she has done,” Butler said. “Her book has become astonishingly well known in a very short period of time and we hope and believe we can retain her here at Yale.”

Pinango’s research interests include the loss of language skills resulting from brain damage. She received her doctorate from Brandeis University in 1998. Pinango is the director of graduate studies for the Cognitive Science Department.

Zhong, a professor in molecular, cellular and developmental biology, is researching the development and behavior of mammalian stem cells. Zhong is currently teaching in Beijing, China, as part of the Yale-Peking Joint Undergraduate Program.

Veal, who is black, specializes in ethnomusicology and jazz composition, and in the analysis of African music and music of the African diaspora. In 2005, he released “The Afro-Kirlian Eclipse,” a full-length jazz album featuring Veal on bass guitar.

Yesterday’s decisions represent the second full tenure appointments process since the University adopted a new system of tenure and appointments last spring. Last December, three junior professors were also granted tenure under the new system.