Spelman College, a global powerhouse in producing black women leaders and scientists, has endeavors to create a model for advancing women of color in the sciences. As such, Spelman College will undertake a six-month planning effort to devise a long range plan for ensuring the continued development of women of color, particularly those of African descent, choosing STEIVI research careers relevant to the biomedical sciences. Because of the national urgency to replenish the science pipeline, address problems facing the STEM workforce and achieve ethnic and gender parity in the sciences, the Women of Color Legacy project (WCL, Activating Critical Collaborations to Empower Women of Color as Leaders in Biomedical Research) will allow us to expand the successes of past efforts that created transformative, large-scale changes in STEIVI programs at Spelman. To prepare for this larger effort and to identify elements of the envisioned signature program, the following specific aims are being proposed: 1) To create an organizational structure and strengthen critical partnerships;2) To identify and evaluate interventions and resources that are innovative and impactful in providing academic support and professional development and training;and 3) To identify resources and infrastructure that are needed for the parent BUILD and devise a plan for sustainability. An external and internal advisory committee will work collaboratively with the principal investigators to direct and oversee activities involved in the planning effort. It is envisioned that the planning grant will allow the principal investigators to conduct site visits, surveys, and focus groups needed to complete the SWOT analysis and finalize partnerships. The outcomes of these activities will allow the principal investigators to develop an integrated model to transform the current landscape of minorities choosing biomedical research careers. Therefore, funding will significantly enhance the capacity of Spelman College to lead this effort and create a consortium committed to diversifying the workforce.
Spelman College will implement an integrated model for training women of color to succeed in fields related to the National Institutes of Health's mission and strategic plans. This project is intended to enhance diversity of the sciences by coordinating highly effective practices in education, training, and outreach for students and faculty of color.