NCA&T ADVANCE Institutional Transformation: Catalyzing Gender, Leadership, and Scholarship Equity through Institutional Change for All
ADVANCING STEM Women at Historically Black Institutions: Ensuring the Best STEM Minds Stay at the Table
North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University will solve a conundrum while transforming itself into an open, transparent community that supports STEM faculty to achieve their best. Research demonstrates how unconscious bias can hold women back from inclusion in the STEM enterprise; NC A&T will help us better understand how gender barriers intersect with racial/ethnicity barriers through its ADVANCE Institutional Transformation award. Dr. Shirley Malcom, former president of AAAS, calls the predicament of STEM women of color "The Double Bind": if it's hard for us to imagine a woman when we hear the word "scientist", it's doubly hard to imagine a woman of color as a scientist. NC A&T will study the factors that lead to the "double bind" and will develop strategies to address the double bind for women at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), strategies that can also be applied to lower barriers for STEM women of color at historically majority institutions. The strategies NC A&T develops and disseminates will help lower barriers for all STEM women through their findings on how to best mentor STEM faculty at mid-career.
NC A&T, through its ADVANCE Institutional Transformation award, will not wait to find answers to the double bind: they will provide STEM women faculty novel professional development opportunities, such as developing personal professional development plans with able mentors, and visiting funding agencies in the DC metro area, an opportunity not previously available to an historically teaching-focused institution. As the nation's population becomes increasingly diverse, we want all the best heads at the bench and in the field: NC A&T will ensure that the best minds are not excluded because they don't fit the traditional mold.