Surging Enrollments Seed Fund

Computing disciplines continue to grow in popularity among all student populations, causing universities and colleges to look for ways to handle the heightened demand for their services and to expand inclusively without inadvertently leaving underrepresented populations behind. This special call of the NCWIT Academic Alliance (AA) Seed Fund invites proposals that develop and test approaches to increasing diversity of incoming computing students despite the enrollment surge.


Seed Fund projects are selected for their ability to apply promising practices for recruiting and retaining women in higher education computing, pilot new approaches to recruitment and retention, and track and evaluate their results. Recruitment of diverse students under conditions of surging enrollments is the primary focus of this award, however, strong projects that promote retention under these same conditions will also be considered.

Congratulations to the 2018 recipients!

Recipients will be honored at the 2018 NCWIT Summit:

  • Colorado School of Mines (Project Principal Investigators: Tracy Camp, Colorado School of Mines; Sharon Naylor, Colorado School of Mines)
  • Michigan Technological University (Project Principal Investigators: Linda Ott, Michigan Technological University; Allison Carter, Michigan Technological University)
  • University of Central Florida (Project Principal Investigators: Melissa Dagley, University of Central Florida; Gary Leavens, University of Central Florida; Damla Turgut, University of Central Florida)
  • University of Minnesota (Project Principal Investigators: Maria Gini, University of Minnesota; Shana Watters, University of Minnesota)

Learn about their outstanding projects on this page.

Additional Information


  • Applications from a variety of institutional settings including community colleges, minority-serving institutions, undergraduate institutions, and research institutions are strongly encouraged.
  • The principal investigator(s) and the institution must be a member of the NCWIT Academic Alliance, as listed here. (To become a member at no cost, a faculty member should complete the online form no later than October 30, 2017.)
  • Previous winners of the AA Seed Fund are eligible to apply.

For more details (including proposal content and deadlines), please view our Surging Enrollments Seed Fund Call for Proposals and FAQs.

Recipient Agreements

  • NCWIT is conducting research investigating how seed funds drive sustained reform and improved outcomes. Recipients agree to be surveyed and/or interviewed, and must submit longitudinal enrollment, declared majors, and graduation data to evaluate outcomes of recruiting and retention efforts.
  • Recipients may be asked to participate in a workshop and/or be invited to co-author publications or presentations.
  • Recipients may be asked to share their project in a post on NCWIT’s blog or by presenting at the annual NCWIT Academic Alliance meeting.
  • The selected proposals will be available for viewing by Academic Alliance members.
  • Award recipients will be recognized at the annual NCWIT Summit in May 2018. Travel for one principal investigator will be reimbursed.

About the AA Seed Fund

The NCWIT AA Seed Fund awards AA member organizations 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. To date, 51 member organizations have received a total of $585,450 to grow their technology-related outreach program.

Find out more information, and review winning proposals at



People Involved: