2019 NCWIT Seed Fund Recipients

View the 2019 NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund recipients, organized by track.

  • The "Surging Enrollments" Track uses research-based approaches, but specifically focus on strategies to recruit and retain women in computing during conditions of enrollment surges. (Jump to list.)

  • The "Microsoft Research Faculty Summit" Track must also use research-based approaches, but is for those who attended the 2018 Microsoft Research Faculty Summit (MRFS) and are focusing their efforts around broadening participation in the 2018 MRFS theme: systems and networking research. (Jump to list.)

  • The "General" Track focuses on broadening participation in computing via research- and evidence-based approaches. (Jump to list.)

“Surging Enrollments” Track

  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University will expand peer mentoring through the Women’s Engineering Institute and implement a new supplemental advising program pairing students from underrepresented groups with diverse faculty members. The Electrical, Computer, Software, and Systems Engineering Department will also provide funding to support undergraduate research, create tech-oriented work-study jobs, and enable students to pursue opportunities to present at technical conferences, in an effort to alleviate the financial pressures that cause many students to leave the program.

    Project Principal Investigators: Shafagh Jafer and Courtney Thurston
  • Georgia State University will create a program to support and retain incoming women students through community building and mentorship. Near-peer undergraduate students will lead biweekly, small-group discussion sections that emphasize building strong connections among students in each cohort. In addition, the program aims to change students’ perceptions of opportunities for women in technical careers through visits to inclusive workplaces and guest presentations by female tech professionals. Students who complete the program may be recruited to become mentors themselves.

    Project Principal Investigator: Olga Glebova
  • Lord Fairfax Community College has a multiple retention approach: 1) expand high school recruitment; 2) improve marketing by removing unintentional bias; and 3) improve computational skills and coding ability for incoming students so as to improve self-confidence for success.

    Project Principal Investigator: Melissa Stange

  • Southern New Hampshire University will offer intentional role modeling, women-led mentorship and community building to develop a culture of equity and inclusion for women in engineering that will support College of Engineering, Technology and Aeronautics's recruitment and retention initiatives.

    Project Principal Investigators: Susan Elsass, Angela Foss and Bo Kim

  • University of Michigan will implement activities to boost the retention of women in computing courses. Within the classroom, we plan to educate all students on inclusive behaviors and the value of diversity. Beyond the classroom, we create community-building opportunities for women.

    Project Principal Investigator: Valeria Bertacco



“Microsoft Research Faculty Summit” Track

  • Duke University will support a Code+R&D initiative in which a team of undergraduate women will undertake a 10-week research and development project in collaboration with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the Department of Computer Science, and the Office of Information Technology. Through this project, students who are interested in research careers can gain a systems-level understanding of the university IT operations, while seeing the real-world applications of their research firsthand.

    Project Principal Investigators: Maria Gorlatova, Tracy Futhey, and John Board
  • University of Texas at Arlington will institute an annual Student Computing Research Festival, including a student research competition, exhibits of ongoing projects, recruitment for technical and research opportunities—both on and off campus, keynote talks by women in computing research fields, and mentorship from alumni, faculty, and graduate students. The festival is designed to encourage women computing students to explore research possibilities by connecting them with people, ideas, and resources to support their interests.

    Project Principal Investigators: Chengkai Li, Ming Li, and Shirin Nilizadeh


“General” Track

  • California Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo will create a new course, Teaching Computing, geared toward computing TAs, tutors, and future K-12 teachers. The new course will emphasize inclusive pedagogical practices and near-peer mentoring. Goals of this project include fostering a more inclusive learning environment within the department while also equipping future computing educators with the skills to effectively recruit and retain students from underrepresented demographics.

    Project Principal Investigators: Zoe Wood and Bruce DeBruhl
  • Central New Mexico Community College will work to grow the percentage of women pursuing computing degrees at the college by recruiting high school women to participate in a Girls Code Community led by female faculty. Outreach efforts will particularly target underserved areas, including rural and tribal communities. The program will provide intentional role modeling to help students learn about possible education and career pathways in computing.

    Project Principal Investigators: Hyekyung Clark and and Donna Diller
  • Knox College will create an annual retreat where current CS students can meet and connect with Knox alumni who are working in the tech industry. At least 50 percent of alumni speakers will be women, and all speakers will complete the NCWIT Inclusive Speaker Orientation. A goal of the project is to retain female computing students by fostering a greater sense of community within the major.

    Project Principal Investigators: Jaime Spacco, Monica McHill, and David Bunde
  • Michigan State University will create a two-week, non-residential Computer Science Bridge Program (CSPB) to help incoming female computing students build community and gain confidence in their programming skills prior to entering college. The CSBP aligns with a broad strategic plan for increasing the percentage of women students in computing through marketing and outreach initiatives, pedagogical innovations, role modeling, and peer support.

    Project Principal Investigators: Laura Dillon, Teresa Isela VanderSloot, and Yolanda Anderson