A Message from the Director:


Welcome to the new academic year! I want to offer a special and warm welcome to ADVANCE’s new Graduate Assistant, Sreya Mukherjee, who joins us this year from the Department of History. Welcome Sreya! Many, many thanks to our outgoing GA, Christie Miksys, who helped keep ADVANCE running smoothly and efficiently during a long period of transitions. Welcome back to our Liaisons, who work tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure that ADVANCE’s core mission comes to fruition.

The past year was a full and exciting one for ADVANCE. In 2022-2023, we awarded four External Mentor Program Grants, two Transitions Program Grants, and one Travel Assistance Program Grant to WSU faculty across multiple campuses. These grants have allowed faculty to develop professional mentoring relationships with off-campus leaders, supported faculty in negotiating major life transitions, and supported travel for dependents of faculty traveling to professional meetings or conferences. Already this year, ADVANCE has funded two Leadership Training Program Grants to allow faculty to participate in the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity’s Faculty Success Program!

Just as exciting, ADVANCE hosted an NCFDD “Re-thinking Mentoring: How to Build Communities of Inclusion, Support, and Accountability.” The event was a rousing success, with 82 registered participants and faculty from across all of the WSU campuses. I am especially grateful for our co-sponsors in the Provost’s Office, the College of Arts and Sciences, Departments of History, Psychology, Sociology, and Criminal Justice, the School of Music, and the President’s Commission on the Status of Women.  A very special thanks to the Kelly Ward Legacy Fund for making possible travel mini-grants to support faculty travel to the event. Look for an invitation to the upcoming NCFDD workshop in spring 2024!

 In addition to our grant initiatives and workshops, each year, ADVANCE purchases an NCFDD institutional membership. Faculty, Graduate Students, and Post-Docs can take advantage of the variety of resources available through the NCFDD, including workshops, webinars, multi-week courses, writing challenges, and more by activating an Institutional Membership Sub-Account. It’s easy and it’s free, with many resources being delivered right to your inbox!

I look forward to another lively and productive year with the ADVANCE team!



Jennifer Thigpen

Associate Professor of History

Director of ADVANCE at WSU

Interesting Read

“Mothers are a force for radical change in academia”                                                       By Fernanda Staniscuaski

The research system must lose its overly rigid attitude toward career progression — and mothers are uniting to make that happen.

Read more about this report HERE!


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