Women make up nearly half of the U.S. working population, but hold less than 25 percent of STEM jobs. Attracting and retaining more women in the academic science and engineering careers maximizes creativity, innovation and competitiveness.

The ADVANCE IT (Institutional Transformation) initiative was established in 2018 with a $2.99 million grant from the National Science Foundation to an interdisciplinary team of faculty women leaders at Virginia Commonwealth University. The purpose of the grant is to transform VCU in ways that will effectively diversify its faculty across various intersecting identities in STEM fields and beyond. Its goal is to overcome immunities to change and increase the recruitment, retention and advancement of STEM female faculty across intersecting identities by initiating structural and cultural change.

Our objectives are to decrease structural and cultural barriers that prevent the diversification of the faculty and to increase the recruitment, retention and advancement of STEM women faculty at VCU.

Read a recent VCU News feature on the new ADVANCE IT grant.