Our mission statement

After decades of social progress towards equality, women are still under-represented in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), particularly at advanced career stages and in leadership roles. Disparities are perpetuated in part by gender bias, which often occurs on an unconscious level due to the influence of our cultural environment. Further, the retention rates of women in STEM continue to be negatively impacted by the scarcity of female mentors and role models. Women hold just 24% of tech jobs and 18% of STEM leadership roles (Development Dimensions International Inc., 2017). By breaking barriers to the success of underrepresented groups in STEM, we can increase diversity and in turn innovation and discovery by STEM problem-solvers and leaders to benefit our global society. Our mission is to build an inclusive self-sustaining community composed of Chicago-area students, postdoctoral scholars, and professionals to support gender equity, diversity, and the success of local women in STEM.

Goals of the 2022-2023 academic year

  1. Continue to expand our cross-career level, interdisciplinary, (now virtual) monthly mentoring program, STEM Circuits, covering more relevant topics and and building our community of local students, postdocs, academics, and industry professionals.  
  2. Host a sixth annual Chicago Women in STEM Symposium in one to two hour virtual sessions the week of International Women’s Day (Details TBD). Our theme for the upcoming event will be “Breaking Through Barriers”.
  3. Develop new pathways to industry and other non-academic careers for Chicago-area graduate students and postdocs by collaborating with our partners in industry, policy, law, and medicine.

Recent publications and press

Chicago Women in STEM and Academia Initiative 

The POSTDOCket; July, 2018


Northwestern University Postdoctoral Association

Website: nupostdocs.org

Partner organizations

The Graduate School Office of Postdoctoral Affairs, The Searle Center for Advancing Learning & Teaching, The Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion, The Women’s Health Research Institute at Northwestern, The Office of the Provost, Northwestern’s Women’s Center, Northwestern’s Graduate Women in Science and Engineering Research (WISER), Graduate Women Across Northwestern (GWAN), University of Chicago: Biological Sciences Postdoctoral Affairs, Feinberg School of Medicine, Society of Women Engineers (SWE), NUCATS, Chicago Council on Science and Technology, Illinois Science Council, Women in Bio: Chicago chapter, Association for Women in Science (AWIS): Chicago chapter, Graduate Women in Science (GWIS): Chicago chapter, American Association for University Women (AAUW), and more!

Stay tuned for more information about upcoming events.