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2019-2020 DIF Projects

2nd Annual Stanford Medicine LGBTQ+ Forum: Building Connections

Participating Department(s): Anesthesia, Biochemistry, Bioengineering, Biology, Biomedical Informatics, Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Cardiothoracic Surgery, Comparative Medicine, Dermatology, Developmental Biology, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, Genetics, Health Research & Policy, Immunology, Medical Scientist Training Program, Medicine Microbiology & Immunology, Molecular & Cellular Physiology, Neurology & Neurological Sciences, Neurosciences, Neurosurgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Ophthalmology, Orthopaedic Surgery, Otolaryngology (Head and Neck Surgery), Pathology, Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Radiation Oncology, Radiology, Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, Urology
Keyword(s): LGBTQ+, Visibility, Medicine
Contact: Tim Keyes,

This certificate prepares Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Trainees to navigate a dynamic future with knowledge, empathy, and justice. We generated a curriculum to provide training in three pedagogical areas: 1. Critical understanding of identity and positionality. 2. Interrogation oppressive infrastructures (current, historical) that obstruct a just future. 3. Development of a culturally competent praxis to enable transformative and inclusive change. While many available training programs simply describe benefits of diverse work environments, our framework requires that trainees immerse themselves in intergroup practica (to foster empathy and solidarity) and establish a praxis to bolster equity at Stanford and as future leaders.

5th Annual Stanford Minorities and Philosophy Conference

Participating Department(s): East Asian Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies in the Humanities, Political Science
Keyword(s): Philosophy of Gender, Philosophy of Race and Ethnicity, Non Western Philosophy
Contact: Sarah Brophy,

In 2017, the SOM's The goal of this project is to highlight and critically engage with the effect of considering questions involving diversity that have been traditionally overlooked at both the professional level and within the subject matter of philosophy. This conference provides graduate students with an opportunity to learn from and interact with diverse faculty with specializations in philosophy of gender, disability, and race, and philosophy from other traditions (e.g. East Asian and African traditions). It provides an opportunity for undergraduate philosophy majors to hear about the experience of pursuing a career in philosophy with a minority identity.

African Humanities Collective

Participating Department(s): African Studies, Anthropology, Art & Art History, Comparative Literature, Comparative Medicine, Health Research & Policy, Interdisciplinary Studies in the Humanities, Law, Modern Thought and Literature, Music, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Stanford Global Studies, Theater and Performance Studies
Keyword(s): Humanities, Interdisciplinarity, Africa
Contact: Kristin Wilson,

Since I've been convening African Humanities Collective meetings, I've better understood the role that AHC should play at Stanford. I first set up AHC because I felt socially and intellectually isolated - as though once "Africa" came up the only topics of conversation were HIV, malaria, famine and civil war. I wanted to discuss Ubuntu and other forms of communitarian and collectivistic philosophies. I wanted to discuss Ifa divination patterns in the same breath as Fibonacci sequences. AHC has gradually evolved into that space where faculty and students can engage with intellectual production from the continent in multifarious intellectual ways.

BEGSA’s “You Belong Here” Engineering Series

Participating Department(s): Aeronautics & Astronautics, Bioengineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Energy Resources Engineering, Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering, Management Science & Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering
Keyword(s): Retention, Belonging, Professional Development
Contact: Kabir Abiose,

The retention of underrepresented minorities within graduate engineering programs is just as significant of a problem as their recruitment. Factors such as feeling a sense of belonging and community are crucial to establishing student confidence and increasing the likelihood of success towards attainment of graduate degrees. Through “You Belong Here,” the Black Engineering Graduate Student Association (BEGSA) aims to foster student confidence and build a sense of community among underrepresented students, thus increasing levels of underrepresented student retention.

Building a Community of Support for Indigenous Graduate and Postdoctoral Student Scholars

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Native American, Professional Development, STEM Mentoring
Contact: Sami Chen,

Between 1992 and 2012, the number of Native American graduate students to receive a PhD across the country went from 0.5% to 0.3%. (Chronicle of Higher Education, NSF, 2014) At most universities, the number of Native American graduate students enrolled in PhD programs is consistently not much higher. This project aims to build and establish academic infrastructure to support current and prospective Native American graduate students and postdocs, and help create pathways into professional and post-graduate careers.

Certificate in Critical Consciousness and Anti-Oppressive Praxis

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Certificate, Transformative, Consciousness
Contact: Jesse Isaacman-Beck,

This certificate prepares Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Trainees to navigate a dynamic future with knowledge, empathy, and justice. We generated a curriculum to provide training in three pedagogical areas: 1. Critical understanding of identity and positionality. 2. Interrogation oppressive infrastructures (current, historical) that obstruct a just future. 3. Development of a culturally competent praxis to enable transformative and inclusive change. While many available training programs simply describe benefits of diverse work environments, our framework requires that trainees immerse themselves in intergroup practica (to foster empathy and solidarity) and establish a praxis to bolster equity at Stanford and as future leaders.

Community College Day

Participating Department(s): Bioengineering, Biology, Biophysics, Immunology
Keyword(s): Community College Outreach, Diversity, STEM
Contact: Louai Labanieh,

The goal of Community College Day is to promote diversity in higher education by assisting community college students in the Bay Area, particularly those from underserved communities, with gaining access to research opportunities and pathways to graduate school. Through the event, we hope the students will i) have an increased understanding of research and graduate school life; ii) obtain a network of graduate students and faculty they can leverage to navigate research opportunities; iii) learn about the journeys of graduate students that attended community college; and iv) gain confidence in pursuing research opportunities, higher education, and a career in science.

Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies (CORE) Workshop

Participating Department(s): African Studies, Anthropology, Art & Art History, Comparative Literature, East Asian Languages and Cultures, East Asian Studies, Economics, Education, English, German Studies, History, Iberian & Latin American Cultures, Latin American Studies, Law, Linguistics, Modern Thought and Literature, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Religious Studies, Sociology, Theater and Performance Studies
Keyword(s): Race, Global, Interdisciplinary
Contact: Vannessa Velez,

This reading group will bring graduate students together from multiple disciplines to read recent scholarship in the study of race and ethnicity. These disciplines may include, but are not limited to, literature, history, sociology, education, anthropology, political science, and psychology. We will focus primarily on the United States, though comparative and global perspectives will be welcome. By meeting to discuss new scholarship 3 times per quarter, this reading group will promote cross-disciplinary perspectives, broaden and deepen participants' knowledge of race and ethnicity in the US, and encourage the formation of a community of young scholars interested in similar topics.

Conference for Undergraduate Women in Economics

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Economics Research, Pipeline
Contact: Shifrah Aron-Dine,

The Conference for Undergraduate Women in Economics (CUWiE) will be a full day conference in the spring of 2020. The aim of the conference is to encourage undergraduate women to participate in economics research and provide motivation and support for their continued pursuit of an economics major and advanced degree in economics. Students will have an opportunity to present their work, learn about pursuing an advanced degree in economics, network with peers, connect with graduate students and faculty, and hear about cutting edge research.

Conference on Disability in Medicine and Healthcare

Participating Department(s): Bioengineering, Biomedical Informatics, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, Health Research & Policy, Medicine, Ophthalmology, Otolaryngology (Head and Neck Surgery), Pediatrics, Surgery
Keyword(s): Disability, Medicine, Healthcare
Contact: Zainub Dhanani,

Twenty-five percent of people in the US have disabilities and face significant healthcare disparities due to barriers in accessing care. To reduce these disparities, there is a significant need to improve physician training, and foster inclusive environments for healthcare professionals who have disabilities themselves. We plan to host the first Disability in Healthcare Conference at Stanford School of Medicine, which will bring together medical professionals and students from the Bay Area through presentations, engaging workshops, and poster presentations. The conference will improve the healthcare environment for all individuals with disabilities, whether as providers or patients.

Criminal Justice Speaker Series

Participating Department(s): Communication, Law, Management Science & Engineering
Keyword(s): Criminal Justice
Contact: William Cai,

This speaker series will serve as a platform for Stanford students and researchers working on criminal justice policy reform to learn from system-involved experts: individuals who have personally experienced the criminal justice system and are now themselves working to create change. While communication about policy research often happens within academia, we feel that certain voices outside of academia are often not heard; these are precisely the voices we most can learn from. Our goal is to amplify the voices of these underserved populations, learn from their insights, and start an on-going avenue of communication.

Diverse Experiences, Unconventional Paths

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Life Experience, Age
Contact: Laura Taylor-Kale,

This project aims to provide career guidance for older graduate students at Stanford. We hope to convene events particularly speakers who can address the specific opportunities and challenges of being an older graduate student. We are particularly interested in graduate students who are forty years old or older and who have had significant work and life experiences prior to becoming graduate students. This project will address diversity of life experience on campus by acknowledging and providing a space for discussion for those who are much older than their fellow students and perhaps close in age to their professors and mentors.

Diversity and Inclusion in Sociology (DAIS)

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Diversity, Community, Recruitment
Contact: Josh Gagne,

Diversity And Inclusion in Sociology (DAIS) is a student group with two primary aims: (1) support and advocate for the community of first generation, low income, and minority students within the sociology department and (2) assist in the recruitment of diverse students and faculty. We approach this in three ways: (1) community group meetings to share experiences, needs, resources, and support and coordinate advocacy efforts; (2) coordinating reach out and responses to diverse applicants during the application period; and (3) meeting with department-invited speakers from traditionally excluded backgrounds.

Diversity Perspectives: Exploring Pathways to Career Success

Participating Department(s): Chemical Engineering, Earth System Science, Immunology, Materials Science and Engineering, Structural Biology
Keyword(s): Diversity, Inclusion, Community
Contact: Katherine Walwyn-Brown,

We will build on the inaugural Diversity Perspectives event held in 2019, bringing a trainee-nominated speaker to give a presentation on their personal experiences navigating diversity and inclusion. The event will facilitate both formal and informal discussions between the speaker and trainees from Stanford University, as well as undergraduate students from local campuses of primarily undergraduate institutions. The seminar will be open to the entire Stanford community and will provide valuable perspectives on how underrepresented and marginalized individuals can navigate career-related hurdles, work productively with colleagues, mentors, and allies, and promote an inclusive and diverse culture at Stanford and beyond.

Diversity Summit

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Summit, Organizing, Inclusion
Contact: Gabriela Nagle-Alverio,

The Diversity and Advocacy Committee of the Graduate Student Council aims to host the second-annual Diversity Summit in which student and faculty leaders are brought together for a series of workshops, structured time for organizing, and community building. The goal is to counteract the fragmentation that graduate students report feeling around their work, and to promote inclusion in the University.

Documentary Film Screening & Speaker Series

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Documentary, Film, Workshop
Contact: Annie Munger,

A series of monthly film screenings and discussions is geared towards exploring the works of a diverse group of filmmakers. There will be a focus on films by women, people of color, and LGBTQ individuals. We will host screenings and invite guest filmmakers to participate in Q&As and teach master class workshops. The screening and speaker series will be an opportunity for the Documentary Film MFA graduate students to extend their discourse beyond the classroom, but it will also be open to all members of the Stanford community in hopes of fostering a greater dialogue about documentary film.

FAFP: Female Academics in Foreign Policy

Participating Department(s): Communication, History, International Policy Studies, Law, Management Science & Engineering, Political Science
Keyword(s): Foreign Policy, Women, Writing
Contact: Rachel Myrick,

Female Academics in Foreign Policy (FAFP) is an interdisciplinary working group of female graduate students and post-docs interested in contemporary U.S. foreign policy issues. It aims to diversify the voices involved in foreign policymaking by helping women acquire tools to identify policy-relevant research areas and develop skills for “bridging the gap” between academia and policymaking. FAFP consists of two main components. First, we host lunches with senior academics and policymakers to lead conversations about foreign policy issues of their choosing. Second, we create and workshop our own policy writing for both academic and practitioner audiences.

Feminist Fridays

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Feminism, Intersectional, Book Club
Contact: Lauren Sukin,

For the past two years, this group has served as an opportunity for graduate students to engage with each other and their gender identities through discussions of creative, intersectional feminist works. Every month, students from across the university are invited to examine a different text dealing with pertinent issues impacting primarily non-male individuals in the modern world. The students then assemble over drinks and snacks in a comfortable forum designed to foster (1) positive discussion of identity, (2) a sense of a supportive community for the women, intersex, and trans-individual at Stanford, and (3) a robust inter-departmental intellectual community.

Future Advancers of Science and Technology

Participating Department(s): Applied Physics, Biochemistry, Bioengineering, Biology, Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Chemical and Systems Biology, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Computer Science, Developmental Biology, Electrical Engineering, Genetics, Geophysics, Immunology, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Microbiology & Immunology, Neurosciences, Physics
Keyword(s): Mentorship, Science, Collaboration
Contact: Jake Hsu,

The Future Advancers of Science and Technology (FAST) forms a partnership between Stanford University graduate students and students and teachers at Andrew Hill High School and James Lick High School, diverse low-income schools in East San Jose. FAST increases participation of underrepresented minority students in STEM by mentoring students in self-generated science projects. Stanford mentors meet every other week with students to brainstorm and carry out these projects. Many enter science fairs, and all participate in a final symposium at Stanford. With the support of a DIF grant this year, we will increase student enrollment and expand our curriculum.

GenerationSci Conference: "Grand Challenges"

Participating Department(s): Aeronautics & Astronautics, Applied Physics, Biochemistry, Bioengineering, Biology, Biomedical Informatics, Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Chemical and Systems, Biology, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Computational Geosciences, Computer Science, Developmental Biology, Earth System Science, Electrical Engineering, Energy Resources Engineering, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, Genetics, Geological Sciences, Geophysics, Health Research & Policy, Immunology, Materials Science and Engineering, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Medicine, Molecular & Cellular Physiology, Neurobiology, Neurology & Neurological Sciences, Neurosciences, Statistics, Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, Structural Biology
Keyword(s): Community College Outreach, Science Communication
Contact: Julia Adamska,

The goal of the GenerationSci Conference is to excite underrepresented community college students about STEM research and to train Stanford graduate students/postdocs to effectively communicate their work to a non-expert audience. We will achieve this goal through a daylong event in which graduate students/postdocs share their educational journeys and current research interests in talks and poster presentations built around the central theme of “Grand Challenges.” Additionally, we will host a workshop and panel with former community college students to discuss avenues for pursuing research and graduate education, and challenges community college students can face in seeking those opportunities.

GradSWE STEM Roundtable Series

Participating Department(s): Aeronautics & Astronautics, Bioengineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering, Management Science & Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering
Keyword(s): Roundtable, STEM, Multimedia
Contact: Isamar Rosa,

GradSWE seeks to promote engineering, provide professional development, and enhance the diversity of the Stanford Engineering community. We focus primarily on supporting female graduate engineers through community building, mentorship, leadership, and networking. The STEM Roundtable Series will serve as a forum to foster interactions among the diverse student community where students can feel free to present their research or lead discussions on relating to Women/Minorities/STEM.

High School to PhD Event (HyPE)

Participating Department(s): Biochemistry, Biology, Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Chemical and Systems Biology, Genetics, Immunology, Microbiology & Immunology, Molecular & Cellular Physiology, Neurosciences, Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, Structural Biology
Keyword(s): Underrepresented, High School, Outreach
Contact: Jenifer Brown,

HyPE (High School to PhD Event) invites Bay Area high school students to Stanford Campus for a day. This is an opportunity for scientists in the Stanford community, including postdocs and graduate students, to inspire high school students who might not otherwise know about science career paths. We target students coming from historically under-represented groups. By exposing them to real scientists, including those from underrepresented groups, we show these students that they, too, belong in science. The event includes science lab tours, college admissions discussion, hands-on science activities, PhD overview, current undergraduate and graduate student panel, and a campus tour.

“Let Me Tell You Something” About My Research-Presentation Clinic for Non-Native Speakers

Participating Department(s): Biochemistry, Bioengineering, Biology, Biomedical Informatics, Cancer Biology, Cardiothoracic Surgery, Chemical and Systems Biology, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Computer Science, Developmental Biology, East Asian Languages and Cultures, East Asian Studies, Electrical Engineering, Genetics, Immunology, Linguistics, Materials Science and Engineering, Medicine, Microbiology & Immunology, Molecular & Cellular Physiology, Neurobiology, Neurology & Neurological Sciences, Neurosciences, Pathology, Physics, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Psychology, Radiation Oncology, Radiology, Statistics, Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, Structural Biology, Surgery
Keyword(s): Non-Native Speaker, Presentation Clinic, Job Talk
Contact: Ying Wang,

This presentation clinic is designed to improve presentation and networking skills at academic conferences and during faculty recruitment process for postdocs/graduate students who are non-native speakers. For each monthly clinic, one non-native speaker will practice an upcoming conference/job talk in front of trainees of multidisciplinary backgrounds and an invited faculty member, to receive immediate advises on the presentation. All attendees will also share their experience on academic presentation and networking. We emphasize diversity and inclusion as a priority by extending the access of professional development to those who may have verbal and cultural obstacles in effective communication in science.

Mathematics Directed Reading Program

Participating Department(s): Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering Mathematics
Keyword(s): Mathematics, Reading
Contact: Alexander Dunlap,

The Mathematics Directed Reading Program (DRP) pairs undergraduate students with graduate student mentor’s. The pairs meet one-on-one, weekly, as they read an agreed-upon mathematical text over the course of a quarter. At the end of the quarter, the participants meet for a colloquium and each give short talks about what they learned. The goal is to build connections between the undergraduate and graduate student communities by helping undergraduates and graduates engage in substantive mathematical projects together, and to facilitate the transfer of mathematical cultural capital to our undergraduate participants.

MD-PhD Preview: A Mentorship Program for Underrepresented Students

Participating Department(s): Genetics, Management Science & Engineering, Medical Scientist Training Program, Microbiology & Immunology, Neurosciences
Keyword(s): URM, Pipeline, Physician-Scientist
Contact: Akshay Sanghi,

Underrepresented minorities (URMs) make up approximately 11% of MD-PhD program graduates, a dramatic underrepresentation relative to census data. MD-PhD Preview connects prospective students from underrepresented backgrounds with Stanford MSTP students and faculty. Participants travel to campus for a fully funded 3-day event to network with MSTP mentors and receive individualized career development advice and coaching. A larger group of participants receive remote mentorship through the Big-Sibling program, which pairs a current Stanford MSTP student with a prospective student. To incorporate best practices in diversity engagement, Stanford faculty and students attend trainings addressing implicit bias on admissions and interactions with URM students..

Muslim Professional Development Group

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Muslim, Mentorship, Community
Contact: Suleman Khan,

The Muslim Professional Development Group will aim to empower and encourage Muslim professionals to be leaders in their careers and communities. This group will encompass graduate, undergraduate, and professional school students at Stanford to build a sense of community amongst-Muslim identifying or allying individuals. Through speaker series and professional mentoring sessions, the Muslim Professional Development Group will invite local Bay Area professionals working in STEM and humanities fields to inspire the Stanford Muslim community to work towards meaningful careers and social change.

Network and Chill Roundtable Series

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Mentorship, Black/African American
Contact: Kimya Loder,

The Network and Chill Series is dedicated to creating structured and sustained spaces for Black graduate and undergraduate students to engage in monthly roundtables and activities over the course of the 2019-2020 academic year. We believe that these dialogues will benefit graduate students by creating spaces for reflection and wisdom sharing, in times where many URM graduate students feel lack of confidence, understanding, and belonging within their discipline. Additionally, we believe that fostering dialogue with graduate students will increase the pipeline of diverse students matriculating into programs by exposing undergraduate students to the value of pursuing graduate and professional degrees.

Paths to PhD: How to Pursue a Graduate Degree in Psychology

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Representation, Outreach, Graduate School
Contact: Mika Asaba,

There is often an imbalance in the distribution of the resources, tools, and information necessary to apply for and attend graduate school such that first-generation and minority students are less likely to have access or be exposed to them. The purpose of this event will be to provide undergraduates and individuals considering pursuit of a PhD from underrepresented and minority (URM) groups with practical information for applying to graduate school in psychology. Participants will learn 1) reasons to pursue graduate education 2) how to choose the right graduate program, and 3) how to craft a compelling application.

Physics Equity and Inclusion Graduate Action Committee

Participating Department(s): Applied Physics, Particle Physics & Astrophysics (SLAC), Physics
Keyword(s): Inclusion, Community
Contact: Thomas Wilkason,

We will hold events open to graduate students in the Physics and Applied Physics departments interested in equity and inclusion issues. Students at each meeting brainstorm around a specific item from the Physics Equity and Inclusion (E&I) Strategic Plan relevant to graduate life, and devise actionable items to help make progress on implementation of the strategic plan. These meetings should increase awareness of equity/inclusion issues and the work being done to address them at the department level, as well as enable a more diverse array of voices to openly discuss these issues and aid in desired actions.

Religion and Identity Politics

Participating Department(s): Anthropology, Classics, Education, History, Linguistics, Philosophy, Political Science, Religious Studies, Sociology
Keyword(s): Religion, Identity Politics
Contact: Abiya Ahmed,

The Religion and Identity Politics group will meet twice a quarter to address intersections of religion and religious identity with politics and the public sphere. Through readings and invited speakers, we hope to offer a critical and interdisciplinary platform to discuss how religion and politics impact each other, with attention to minorities, race, gender, and class issues.

SeeME: Teacher Recruitment and Training

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Outreach, Education, Communication
Contact: Zach del Rosario,

SeeME is a student-driven outreach program hosted by Mechanical Engineering. Our program engages groups underrepresented in STEM by partnering with local special-mission schools (e.g. DCP Alum Rock) to participate in our on-campus outreach event. We train our Stanford student-teachers in evidence-based pedagogy to support their outreach. SeeME advances diversity both by inspiring students to consider STEM, and by providing internal opportunities for diverse Stanford students to engage in motivating work.

SMASH-Med High School Summer Program

Participating Department(s): Health Research & Policy, Medicine, Surgery
Keyword(s): Outreach, Medical School, High School
Contact: Miquell Miller,

SMASH-Med partners with a STEM-intensive 5-week summer program (SMASH) for low-income high school students of color. We provide hands-on workshops with healthcare professional students, trainees, and faculty, designed to stimulate interest and encourage confidence in and self-efficacy in pursuing healthcare careers. The 2019 curriculum includes five 90-minute workshops (surgical skills training, anatomy lab, clinical simulations, etc.) and CPR training. Stanford students and faculty guide activities, provide valuable medical exposure experiences, and become mentors for a diverse group of high schoolers. Our community partner, the Kapor Center, recruits and houses the students and leads computer science, engineering, and design thinking courses.

Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS)

Participating Department(s): Bioengineering, Biology, Cancer Biology, Developmental Biology, Electrical Engineering, Genetics, Neurobiology, Neurosciences, Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine
Keyword(s): SACNAS, Professional Development, Diversity
Contact: Leslie Mateo,

The SACNAS Chapter at Stanford was founded in 2016. Being a part of a greater national organization, we follow the same mission statement: SACNAS is an inclusive organization dedicated to fostering the success of underrepresented scientists, from college students to professionals, in attaining advanced degrees, careers, and positions of leadership in STEM. We want to propel our young organization forward through programming that specifically aims to increase diversity in STEM by creating a community of current students, undergraduate and graduate, and alumni that supports each other through sharing resources and knowledge, inspiring underrepresented youth, and developing personal and professional skills.

Solidary, Leadership, Inclusion, Diversity (SoLID) Mentorship Program

Participating Department(s):  Bioengineering, Biology, Biomedical Informatics, Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Chemical and Systems Biology, Developmental Biology, Genetics, Immunology, Medicine, Microbiology & Immunology, Molecular & Cellular Physiology, Neurosciences, Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, Structural Biology
Keyword(s): Mentorship, Diversity, Belonging
Contact: Amber Moore,

SoLID gives students access to a wider network of mentorship support that consists of faculty advocates who are committed to promoting inclusion and retention across the Biosciences. This program creates a space for students to discuss issues that may fall outside the bounds of research, including identity, impostor syndrome, stereotype threat and/or related challenges. Establishing a deeper connection between faculty and students benefits both groups, as participating mentors gain a window into the lives and daily challenges of graduate students, providing them with insight they can use to guide their own trainees more effectively.

Someone Like Me: A Postdoc-Graduate Student Mentoring Program for Trainees With Minoritized Backgrounds

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Mentoring, Equity and Inclusion
Contact: Ioana Marin,

The proposed postdoc-grad mentoring program has a 3-fold mission: 1) to provide a platform for graduate students and postdocs to discuss issues pertaining to mentoring, and equity and inclusion; 2) to provide professional guidance to graduate students from minoritized backgrounds, who often struggle to find relatable role models, and 3) to provide postdocs with an opportunity to practice and share their mentoring experiences. The program will consist of monthly themed lunches with discussions on topics chosen based on attendees’ needs and interests. Through this format, we aim to educate attendees and to build a robust community of mentors and mentees.

Stanford Women Association of Physician Scientists (SWAPS) Career Development Initiative

Participating Department(s): 
Keyword(s): Physician-Scientist, Mentorship, Women
Contact: Madeline Cooper,

The Stanford Women Association of Physician-Scientists (SWAPS) was founded in direct response to student feedback that our community needed an organization to provide structured mentorship, camaraderie, and education surrounding issues that women face in pursuing physician-scientist careers. This is achieved through the establishment of 1. quarterly networking events with faculty and residents, 2. career development workshops and 3. formation and funding of small mentorship families composed of Stanford MSTP students at each stage of training and a female physician-scientist faculty member. We hope SWAPS advances diversity by enriching the experiences of women as we launch into physician-scientist roles.

Stanford Women in Earth Science

Participating Department(s):  Computational Geosciences, Earth System Science, Earth Systems Program, Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources, Energy Resources, Engineering, Geological Sciences, Geophysics
Keyword(s): Gender, Earth Science, Networking
Contact: Abigail Birnbaum,

Stanford Women in Earth Science’s (WES) mission is to promote gender diversity in scientific fields of study related to the Earth. We seek to empower women in earth science at Stanford, build networks within and outside of Stanford, and cultivate a safe, supportive community across the School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences and related programs. We hold professional development workshops, host successful scientists, and organize mixers and discussions for our members.

Stanford Women In Math Mentoring (SWIMM)

Participating Department(s):  Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering, Mathematics, Statistics
Keyword(s): Women in Math, Gender Diversity, Women in STEM
Contact: Ipsita Datta,

SWIMM’s goal is to reduce the gender gap in the mathematical sciences through mentoring and community events. Interested undergraduates are paired with graduate mentors from mathematics, statistics, and ICME. Through their mentor, participants gain access to advice about academic and career possibilities from someone personally invested in their success. Mentors provide encouragement and talk to their mentees about experiences unique to the math community. Program-wide events create a sense of community across multiple departments, increase the visibility of underrepresented groups in math, and give undergraduates a chance to interact with graduate students and faculty in an informal setting.

Together Resilient and Unstoppable (TRU)

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Mental Health, Community, Support
Contact: Courtney Smith,

Many diversity programs focus on recruitment, but neglect to address retention issues and the prevalence of mental health problems in graduate school, which especially affect underrepresented minorities and FLI students. Yet everyone performs better academically and professionally when they take care of their mental health. This project aims to facilitate the development of each participant's own mental health "toolkit." Activities will include resilience workshops, community support groups, guest speakers, and outdoor events - all designed to advance diversity through helping those who disproportionately struggle with retention, success and well-being in graduate school.

Women in Applied Physics and Physics

Participating Department(s): Applied Physics, Physics
Keyword(s): Physics, Women, Community
Contact: Claire Hebert,

The Women in Applied Physics and Physics group serves the community of graduate women in the Applied Physics and Physics departments at Stanford. The main goals of the project are to build a strong community through welcome events and regular lunches, as well as to provide networking events with faculty, visiting scholars, and professionals in industry.

Writer's Black

Participating Department(s): All
Keyword(s): Solidarity, Community, Retention
Contact: Danielle Greene,

Writer’s Black is a student group aiming to foster intellectual community amongst graduate students from across the African Diaspora through opportunities to engage in writing workshops/retreats. Given that Black/African-American students are only 2% of the graduate student population and there are few graduate level AAAS or Black Studies courses offered, Writer’s Black will provide an space for graduate students to come together to share ideas, commune across departments, give and receive critical feedback, support each other’s academic journeys, and write in community. This group is interdisciplinary by nature and students from all departments and schools are encouraged to participate.

You Belong: Empowerment, Education, & Environment Program at Stanford (YBEEEPS)

Participating Department(s): Biology, Earth System Science, Earth Systems Program, Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources, Geological Sciences, Geophysics
Keyword(s): Environment, College, STEM
Contact: Shersingh Tumber-Davila,

YBEEPS consists of career day events at Stanford and local Bay Area schools where we introduce careers in earth sciences. Most of the events consist of bringing students to Stanford, where they learn about life on campus, meet earth scientists, and do an interactive science demonstration. Additionally, YBEEPS hosts in-school outreach programs, where we send an earth scientist to an elementary school where students get an in-person introduction to earth sciences. The target communities are the low-income and first-gen communities present in the Bay Area, such as San Francisco, East Palo Alto, Redwood City, and San Jose.