NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund

Seed Fund Image
The NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund awards NCWIT's Academic Alliance members at non-profit, U.S. institutions (excluding U.S. territories) with start-up funds (up to $10,000 per project) to develop and implement initiatives for recruiting or retaining women in computing and IT. To date, 43 member organizations have received a total of $505,450 to grow their technology-related outreach program. We thank Microsoft Research for their support of the Seed Fund.  In addition, a campus is eligible to win one Seed Fund award; however, a principle investigator may win more than once if they have moved to a different campus.

Applications for 2016 are now closed

The current round of the NCWIT Seed Fund has closed. Winners will be announced by February 29, 2016 so be sure to check back here to see who won and when the next call for proposals is announced. We look forward to hearing the winners speak about their projects at the May 2016 Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada.

February 2015 (Round 11):

Microsoft Research and NCWIT are pleased to announce via press release the 11th round of Seed Fund winners. We look forward to hearing the winners speak about their projects at the 2015 Summit in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Daytona Beach will help fund a woman’s engineering institute to recruit and retain female undergraduate and graduate students. The program will provide female students with unique mentoring and networking opportunities and will connect them with industry partners who are looking to hire recent female graduates. Project Principle Investigator: Shafagh Jafer
  • University of Maryland-College Park aims to host five workshops for high school and undergraduate students to kindle interest in computing fields. The workshops include hands-on activities involving web development, app development, Internet protection, grad school applications, and job interview exercises. Project Principle Investigators: Jandelyn Plane, Anusha Gururaj
  • University of North Carolina-Greensboro, in collaboration with Kennesaw State University, plans to host a three-day program that provides rising female sophomore students with an opportunity to get a head start on programming skills. The program aims to foster female students’ interest in information systems through engaging in hands-on projects, mentoring and networking with IT professionals, and socializing with their peers. Project Principle Investigators: Lakshmi Iyer, Sweta Sneha
  • University of Texas-Dallas (UTD) intends to facilitate a summertime, residential, overnight camp experience for incoming freshmen female students who have been accepted to UTD for the fall semester. The program will help develop a community for attendees to meet faculty, do hands-on activities, and network with career professionals. Project Principle Investigators: Janell Straach, Mary Partain

2015 NCWIT SF Winners

Left to Right: Susan Davis Allen, Janell Straach, Lakshmi Iyer, Keith Garfield (accepting for Shafagh Jafer), Mayim Bialik, Mary Partain, Jandelyn Plane, Sweta Sneha

For complete program results and status of past Seed Fund rounds, download our Seed Fund Executive Report.

View Previous Winners

Learn more about NCWIT promising practices and other resources.

For further information about any NCWIT Academic Alliance opportunities, please contact the AA program manager, Kimberly Kalahar, at

To join the NCWIT Academic Alliance, simply complete this Academic Alliance Membership Form to be sent further details regarding membership.

People Involved: 

Sharon Mason

Co-chair Liaison

Charlie McDowell

Co-chair Liaison

Robert Beck

Co-chair Liaison