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Intent of Academic Leadership for Women in Engineering (ALWE) Program

To address the need for more women in positions of academic leadership in engineering and to foster the professional growth of women within the academy, The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) developed the Academic Leadership for Women in Engineering (ALWE) program. The overarching purpose of ALWE is to provide female academics in engineering tangible skills and knowledge needed to pursue and gainfully acquire and maintain institutional leadership positions at a university. SWE also hopes this program provides women with skills that will help them grow personally as leaders.

Participants in the program will experience two-full days and many interactive sessions that will provide best practices to advance in academia while creating opportunities and mechanisms to network across institutions. To that end, the objectives of ALWE are as follows:

  • Recognize the various roles associated with holding leadership positions within academia.
  • Learn strategies and tools to advance in leadership roles within academia.
  • Learn negotiation skills to use in pursuing institutional leadership positions.
  • Expand an existing network of women in academia.
  • Support a community of practice focused on similar goals and face with similar challenges.

Program Details

Attendee Criteria

SWE will host the program for 50-60 early career, mid-career, senior and/or aspiring STEM faculty employed by a university. Women who are tenured, hold tenure track positions, or are beginning their careers in academia are invited to attend.

Cost: The ALWE Program and WE18 registration is provided free of cost to attendees who apply and are accepted into the program. As a result, the only cost to each participant is travel and lodging. Please note that travel funding is available – refer to the eligibility guidelines below.

Application Process

All ALWE participants must complete the following application guidelines. If you are not applying for the travel grant, please indicate this within the following application.

  • SF Bio – A biographical sketch that adheres to NSF guidelines.
  • Statement of Interest - describe what you hope to gain by participating in the event and how the experience will benefit you and your career.
  • Statement of Diversity Contribution - describe your contributions to engineering diversity as well as your future diversity-related goals.

Travel Funding

In the fall of 2015, SWE, along with six other minority professional engineering society partners, was awarded a four-year grant from the National Science Foundation called ASSIST (Grant No. 1548200) to increase the diversification of the engineering professorate. With the support of the ASSIST grant, SWE will be able to fund up to 40 engineering early faculty, post-doctoral professionals, and graduate students to attend ALWE held at WE18.

SWE will cover flight and hotel expenses and provide a daily per diem of $64 towards additional expenditures. If awarded a travel stipend, recipients must book their travel and hotel through SWE to ensure costs are kept to a minimum. If an ASSIST Travel Grant is awarded, recipients are responsible for attending the entire program for which the grant is intended. If you do not attend the entire program, you will be responsible for the travel costs incurred.

Travel Funding Eligibility Guidelines

To be eligible for the ASSIST travel grant, applicants must be a faculty member, post-doctoral scholar, or graduate student in addition to meeting the following criteria:

  • NSF Bio – A biographical sketch that adheres to NSF guidelines.
  • Post-doctoral applicants must have completed a Ph.D. in engineering within 48 months prior to their application.
  • Graduate students must be within one year of graduating with an engineering degree, in good academic standing, and enrolled as full or part time students.
  • Faculty and post-doctoral applicants must hold engineering appointments in an ABET accredited institution; and faculty from two-year colleges must teach STEM-related courses.
  • Faculty applicants must have held their appointment for five years or less.
  • Must be a US citizen or permanent resident.

Registration is open from May 1 to July 31, 2018. Click here to register. Refer to the ALWE FAQ for common questions and answers about the program or email.

This project is based upon work partially supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1548200 and through the generosity of the Henry Luce Foundation, Inc.