In 2019, Clarkson University was awarded a nearly $1 million grant by the National Science foundation (NSF) that will be used to reduce bias in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).

The project, STEM Leadership, Equity and Advancement of Faculty (STEM LEAF), is designed to effect positive institutional change around reduction of implicit or unintentional bias associated with gender and intersectional issues of race, ethnicity, country of origin, sexual orientation, and disability, to systematically and equitably support the development of inclusive leadership skills and the professional advancement of women STEM faculty, and to implement sustainable, systematic changes across the University in support of these goals. 

Twitter: @clarksonadvance YouTube Channel 


  • This NSF program began in 2001 and since then, more than 160 institutions have received ADVANCE grants.
  • ADVANCE focuses on “broadening the implementation of evidence-based systemic change strategies that promote equity for STEM faculty in academic workplaces and the academic profession.

Our Goals

Transformation of the campus culture to further foster innovation through inclusion and belonging by the following:

  • significantly reduce implicit or unintentional bias associated with gender, race and ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, and country of origin
  • support inclusive leadership development of current and future University Leadership and professional development of STEM women faculty
  • promote the sustainability of these systemic efforts through university-wide structural changes 

Contact us at Learn about more options to get involved, including:

  • STEM Women Faculty Advisory Group
  • Advocates and Allies Program
  • Planning committees for various activities

The ADVANCE team at Clarkson includes President Marc Christensen, Laura Ettinger, Stephanie Schuckers, Jen Ball, Bill Jemison, Tom Langen, Sumona Mondal, Christopher Robinson, Amber Stephenson, Amy McGaheran, Elizabeth (Lisa) Podlaha-Murphy, Amanda Pickering, Sarah Treptow, and Michelle Crimi. 

Leadership Development 
   * Annual one-day chair training retreat 
   * Once-a-semester leadership roundtable 
   * Leadership workshops for university leaders and emerging leaders (particularly women, self-identified or identified by others) 

STEM Women Faculty Workshops 
   * Not to “fix women” but rather to address the reality of women’s diverse experiences 

Workshops will be announced periodically. For more information or get involved, contact us

Past Events

Talk to Media about Research

Clarkson has partnered with The Conversation to promote our faculty as subject matter experts in your unique field of expertise. Each day they publish dozens of articles on timely topics such as COVID-19 and aerosols, where you sit in a room with COVID super-spreaders, fake accounts on social media, and why a contested election won’t destroy American democracy, to name a few. They are always looking for new and unique ideas and stories from our faculty experts.

Things that were covered:

  • Why talk to the media
  • Why it is important/valuable
  • What do the reporters actually want when they request to talk to you
  • How to frame your research so that it is consumable to broad audiences 
  • Ways to craft your message so that it is heard and used

Virtual Faculty Workshop

The STEM LEAF/ADVANCE Team is sponsored a webinar that will be focused on being an active bystander in STEM classroom settings.

Be an Active Bystander

Understand the five stages of being an active bystander, and the associated benefits and barriers. Practice intervening in various scenarios.

Advocates and Allies

  • Designed to improve gender equity through the direct and proactive engagement of men faculty.
    • Advocates: senior men faculty who educate themselves about issues of gender [in]equity;
    • Allies: men faculty whom the Advocates train as proponents for gender equity in their departments.
  • Used by more than 15 universities, including Lehigh University and Rochester Institute of Technology
  • In consultation with women faculty
  • Program introduction and training by North Dakota State University founders of program: Fall 2020 Semester

Workshops will be announced periodically. For more information or get involved, contact Christopher Robinson

Structural Changes: Policies and Practices

  • Operations Manual Review
  • Department Chair duties with explicit reference to fostering a supportive, diverse, and inclusive departmental environment
  • Examination and possible revision of academic policies in relation to recruitment and retention of women faculty
  • Improving awareness of policies and ensuring that they are put into practice

Oral History Research

  • Perform in-depth oral history interviews with a sample of current and former Clarkson female-identified STEM faculty.
  • Deepen our understanding of the challenges female-identified STEM faculty face, especially at small, technological universities in geographically isolated settings.
  • Inform attempts to change campus cultures and increase recruitment, retention, and advancement of female-identified STEM faculty.

Faculty Success

How to Get a Job Offer from a Smaller Joint Teaching-Research Mission University and What to Do Once You Have It by Tom Langen


What the Doctor Title Means for Women of Color 
Allyship (& Accomplice): The What, Why, and How 
The Psychological Impact of Constantly Having to Explain Racism 
Podcast: Isabel Wilkerson On America's Caste System : Fresh Air : NPR 
Podcast: Building an Anti-Racist Workplace - WorkLife with Adam Grant


10 Small Steps for department Chairs to Foster Inclusion 
How Colleges Can Cultivate Students' Sense of Belonging 
Diversity Doesn't Stick without Inclusion


How do we become biased? 
All Along the Pipeline, Men Promote Men 
The entrenched inequity of not appropriately citing scholarship of women and people of color  


Institutional Approaches to Mentoring Faculty Colleagues

Recommended Books

  • The Inclusion Nudges Guidebook by Lisa Kepinski & Tinna C. Nielsen
    • Synopsis: Inclusion Nudges are practical designs to influence the unconscious mind to automatically be inclusive in daily actions, leadership, and decision-making. Inclusion Nudges are redesign of processes, reframing of perceptions, as well as eye-openers that motivate and engage people in making inclusion the norm everywhere, for everyone. The Inclusion Nudges Guidebook is a collection of 100 how-to examples designed based on behavioural and social sciences and insights about stuck patterns for inclusion. These are all designed and applied by us and a global community of change makers who share their own proven examples.
  • Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Perez 
    • Synopsis: Data is fundamental to the modern world. From economic development, to healthcare, to education and public policy, we rely on numbers to allocate resources and make crucial decisions. But because so much data fails to take into account gender, because it treats men as the default and women as atypical, bias and discrimination are baked into our systems. And women pay tremendous costs for this bias, in time, money, and often with their lives. Celebrated feminist advocate Caroline Criado Perez investigates shocking root cause of gender inequality and research in Invisible Women†‹, diving into women’s lives at home, the workplace, the public square, the doctor’s office, and more. Built on hundreds of studies in the US, the UK, and around the world, and written with energy, wit, and sparkling intelligence, this is a groundbreaking, unforgettable exposé that will change the way you look at the world.
  • Fair Play by Eve Rodsky
    • Synopsis: It started with the Sh*t I Do List. Tired of being the "shefault" parent responsible for all aspects of her busy household, Eve Rodsky counted up all the unpaid, invisible work she was doing for her family - and then sent that list to her husband, asking for things to change. His response was...underwhelming. Rodsky realized that simply identifying the issue of unequal labor on the home front wasn't enough: She needed a solution to this universal problem. Her sanity, identity, career, and marriage depended on it. The result is Fair Play: a time- and anxiety-saving system that offers couples a completely new way to divvy up chores and responsibilities. Rodsky interviewed more than 500 men and women from all walks of life to figure out what the invisible work in a family actually entails and how to get it all done efficiently. With four easy-to-follow rules, 100 household tasks, and a series of conversation starters for you and your partner, Fair Play helps you prioritize what's important to your family and who should take the lead on every chore from laundry to homework to dinner. "Winning" this game means rebalancing your home life, reigniting your relationship with your significant other, and reclaiming your Unicorn Space - as in, the time to develop the skills and passions that keep you interested and interesting. Stop drowning in to-dos and lose some of that invisible workload that's pulling you down. Are you ready to try Fair Play? Let's deal you in.
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