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About Project CEOS

Introductory video

Project Summary (as submitted to NSF)
Project Description (as submitted to NSF)

Logic model

2010 Mid-Project Research Report

2011 Mid-Project Research Report

Resource Allocation Pilot Report

Work Conditions Final Report

External Evaluation Report from Mary Wright

Project CEOS includes three participating STEM Colleges: Engineering, Veterinary Medicine, and the division of Natural and Mathematical Sciences in the College of Arts & Sciences

A Plan for Comprehensive Equity Across the STEM Disciplines

Our strategy for achieving transformational change is comprised of four components.

Learn more about:

Leadership Development for Deans and Department Chairs

Deans and department chairs have had training in the typical responsibilities inherent in the position, but there has been comparatively little emphasis on leadership itself. The focus will be experiential learning about transformational leadership, executive coaching to assist these leaders in shifting deeply held cultural assumptions and norms, and informal learning through peer problem-solving groups.

The deans and department chairs will meet in quarterly workshops to learn and reflect on leadership issues. These workshops will emphasize:

Recognizing and addressing underlying cultural assumptions that pose barriers for women in STEM departments and colleges;

Inclusive versus exclusive practices to help leaders understand the impact of different behaviors, emphasizing gender, ethnicity, and ability status;

The importance of faculty mentoring throughout a long career to prevent post-tenure burnout, recognize and redirect frustration, and engineer equitable workloads and reward structures.

Peer Mentoring for Women Leaders in the Participating STEM Colleges

The CEOS Women in Leadership program will have two components and all tenured women in the three STEM colleges will have access to these programs.

Leadership Workshops

Quarterly workshops on leadership topics will be offered. Issues of particular interest to women leading men will be emphasized, including:

  • Influencing without Authority
  • Dealing with difficult people and situations
  • Helping women faculty develop career plans

Peer Mentoring Circles

Engaging women faculty in peer networking

Women leaders experience isolation and disconnection from those they are leading compared to their male counterparts. Peer mentoring will allow them to bring problems to a safe group for suggested solutions.1

Establish a safe environment

Building trust is essential for any program that includes peer mentoring, and a necessary condition for such trust is repeated interactions with a constant set of colleagues.1 Group size is an important variable affecting success with peer mentoring. We will form groups of 12–15 circle members and expect that 4–6 such groups will be necessary to meet demand. We will use the first meeting to set expectations for individual and group behavior (especially confidentiality).

Explore possible solutions to real-time issues

Circle members will be encouraged to bring to the group real-time issues they are facing, with the expressed purpose of exploring possible solutions. The group then will engage with the problems at hand via facilitated discussions that focus on finding workable solutions. This technique not only helps women leaders solve problems, but also builds a community that prevents feelings of isolation and burnout.

Professional group facilitation will enhance the mentoring experience

Monthly mentoring circles will be facilitated by a professional trained in group mentoring techniques.


1 Daniell E. 2006. Every other Thursday. New Haven: Yale University Press.


Action Learning Project Teams

The action learning project teams will bring together a cross-section of departmental and college members to craft a vision and a plan for attaining that vision in each college. Through experiential learning, these teams will undertake the important work of deliberately and systematically changing the colleges’ cultures and will visualize how their plans can contribute to an institution-wide transformation plan.

  • Action learning teams develop plans for local change via specific projects
  • CEOS leadership development tools and strategies will link with action learning
  • Action learning teams include deans, chairs, faculty, and staff in the participating colleges and beyond
  • Teams will share their plans and activities across colleges at quarterly meetings

NMS 1st year Action Learning Report

Entrepreneurship Training for Women in STEM

Project REACH has been established for women faculty in the three STEM colleges who are leading a research team and are interested in scientific entrepreneurship.

From the Bench to the Marketplace

Structured workshops offered by internal and external experts will provide the information and tools to move ideas from the bench to the market place, and will draw upon the expertise of Ohio State’s Office of Technology Licensing and Center for Entrepreneurship.

Topics include:
  • pattern recognition
  • entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship
  • how to write a business plan
  • intellectual property and trademarks
  • business ethics
  • technology licensing issues (technology transfer)
  • the patenting process (patent disclosures)
  • communication and negotiation skills
  • the Small Business Innovation Research program (SBIR)
  • market research (taking financial risks)
  • sources of funding (obtaining venture capital)
  • developing a research team (difficult conversations, hiring, and firing)
  • work-life issues in a research-intense environment