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The Forward To Professorship Workshop

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Women Faculty & the NSF ADVANCE Program

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1286.1 - 10.1286.14



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Paper Authors

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Rachelle Heller

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H. David Snyder

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Catherine Mavriplis

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Charlene Sorensen

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

The “FORWARD to Professorship” Workshop

Catherine Mavriplis, Rachelle Heller,

George Washington University, Washington DC

Charlene Sorensen, H. David Snyder

Gallaudet University, Washington, DC


“FORWARD to Professorship” is a workshop that aims to help women and other underrepresented groups in Science, Engineering and Mathematics succeed in obtaining tenure-track faculty positions and in acquiring tenure. The workshop addresses skills and strategies to survive and excel in academia. Participants from wide geographical, disciplinary and career level backgrounds come together for a three-day workshop in May. Participant rating of the activities and the entire workshop experience has been very positive. Several months after the workshop, participants report increased confidence and networking, aiding them in their career development.

1. Introduction

The National Science Foundation (NSF)’s ADVANCE program seeks to “increase the participation of women in the scientific and engineering workforce through the increased representation and advancement of women in academic science and engineering careers.”1 With this goal in mind, we developed the “FORWARD to Professorship” workshop to address unmet needs of women seeking, interested in or occupying tenure- track assistant professor positions in science, engineering and mathematics (SEM). This workshop was developed from a similar workshop, “FORWARD to Graduate School” that we created and ran from 1998 to 2001, under NSF funding for SEM women at the undergraduate to graduate junction. The current workshop is funded by a NSF ADVANCE Leadership award.

In spite of the fact that women have been attaining doctorates, in general, at higher rates in recent years, their representation within science and engineering faculty remains small2. This discrepancy points to obstacles at the employment level for which few new faculty are prepared3,4. Institutional reform may correct some of the more obvious biases on a short time scale but will take a much longer time to fill in mismatches between the academic culture as practiced at most institutions and the professional and workplace lifestyle needs of women faculty.

“Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education”

Heller, R., & Snyder, H. D., & Mavriplis, C., & Sorensen, C. (2005, June), The Forward To Professorship Workshop Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14369

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