GST logo

Using Appreciative Inquiry as a Tool to Instigate Transformational Change in Recruiting and Developing Women Faculty in STEM Disciplines

Jill E Nemiro, Barbara Hacker, Mary Lucero Ferrel, Ruth Guthrie


The intent of Cal Poly Pomona's (CPP) NSF ADVANCE program is to create a university-wide system of recruitment and career development that will enable women faculty in STEM disciplines to be successful and advance into leadership positions. To begin the organizational transformation at CPP, eight Appreciative Inquiry focus groups were held with tenure-track and tenured faculty in the Colleges of Science and Engineering, with the goal of ascertaining current strengths in recruitment and career development efforts for new STEM female faculty at CPP. Findings revealed an array of recruitment strategies utilized to solicit good applicant pools, and career development practices that have assisted female faculty during the tenure and promotion process. Focus group participants also designed useful actions for further improvement of the recruiting and career development efforts for women STEM faculty at CPP. Out of the focus group findings, a variety of best practices for recruiting and developing women faculty in STEM disciplines are suggested.


science; engineering; math; faculty recruitment; faculty career development; STEM; women faculty; Appreciative inquiry

Full Text: