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ADVANCE Initiatives

To read more about UMBC ADVANCE's institutional initialtives, recruitment, hiring and advancement activities, plase download out poster ADVANCE at the University of Maryland Baltimore County: Looking Back and Moving Forward

UMBC ADVANCE has successfully implemented a series of initiatives designed to encourage the advancement of current female faculty members, increase the numbers of women hired as faculty within the STEM departments, and educate women post-docs and graduate students on how to successfully navigate the faculty career pathway. Targeted initiatives include Recruitment and Hiring, Mentoring, Faculty Development, Leadership Development and Family Friendly Policies.

Recruitment and Hiring

  • Faculty Horizons Workshop for Aspiring STEM Faculty
    A two and a half day workshop created to prepare post-doctoral fellows and upper- level graduate students for careers in STEM, with particular attention focused on attracting women from underrepresented groups. For more information, visit our Faculty Horizons page.
  • Departmental Diversity Plans
    All departments preparing to hire must commit to attracting a broad range of applicants by considering diversity when forming a search committee, advertising in publications focused on underrepresented groups and fully considering women and underrepresented minority applicants. Searches are not authorized until the Diversity Plan is approved.
  • ADVANCE Research Assistant (RA) Program for Chairs
    The ADVANCE Research Assistantship (RA) Program for Chairs allows department chairs to offer RA’s to new candidates who are being offered tenure-track faculty positions at UMBC. The program provides support for new women faculty being hired in the STEM fields.


  • Women in Science and Engineering (WISE)
    WISE is an informal university network of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at UMBC that meets monthly to provide a community of exchange and support. WISE is an independent organization that works collaboratively with the ADVANCE Program, the Faculty Development Center and the Center for Women and Information Technology (CWIT) in establishing a powerful community of support and mentoring for women in STEM at UMBC.
  • Eminent Scholar Program
    Designed to facilitate a mentoring relationship between a UMBC STEM female faculty member and a prominent researcher in her field. The relationship is established to provide a connection for the UMBC faculty member to a prominent scholar in her field and the larger scientific community, hence enhancing her career.
  • Faculty Sponsorship Committee
    A peer review committee made up of senior STEM faculty that identifies and advises women about dossier preparation, balancing research and service obligations and developing effective teaching portfolios as they anticipate third-year review or tenure with promotion.
  • Faculty Liaisons
    These departmental representatives serve as conduits of information between the ADVANCE Program and individual departments.

Faculty Development

  • Faculty ADVANCEment Workshop Series
    ADVANCE expanded the WISE mentoring activities into a formal workshop series, providing monthly workshops for all STEM faculty members on topics related to the tenure process, grant writing, resource negotiation, department politics, press relations, work/life issues, effective communication and lab management. For a list of upcoming workshops, visit the News & Events Page.
  • Research Assistant (RA) Program
    A competitive program awarding funding for RA's to faculty who actively support the advancement of women and minorities in STEM fields. Awards support associate professors who are close to promotion, compensate for high service loads and serve as bridge money for faculty between grants.
  • Faculty Development Plans
    These individualized plans for all new tenure-track faculty serve as a roadmap outlining clear guidelines for tenure, promotion and advancement.

Leadership Development

  • Leadership Cohort Program
    Originally a pilot program for women's leadership development on campus, this program uses a cohort model and focuses on intentional career advancement. The first cohort convened in the fall of 2005 and was comprised of six women, including STEM faculty and mid-level administrators. Now, the Leadership Cohort Program is in its third year and is having an institutional impact that is systematically transforming the culture of the university.
  • Distinguished Speakers Series
    ADVANCE Distinguished speakers give campus-wide talks on diversity in science. The purpose of this series is to continue campus conversations surrounding issues related to gender and racial diversity in STEM and to provide professional networking opportunities for our faculty and students. In addition to giving a formal presentation to the UMBC community, the speaker meets informally with the WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) group and STEM-based student groups to share best practices for career success.

Family Friendly Policies

  • Family Leave at UMBC
    UMBC’s ADVANCE Program has created a unique system of supportive networks for its STEM women faculty and one major impact of UMBC ADVANCE has been its work in interpreting, developing and fully implementing the university’s newest comprehensive family and medical leave policy.
  • UMBC Family Leave Brochure
    In collaboration with the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs, UMBC ADVANCE developed the first campus-wide Family Leave brochure. This brochure is frequently handed out to current faculty and department chairs and is given to all prospective faculty during the campus interview.