Society of Women Engineers

Academic Leadership for Women in Engineering (ALWE)

To address the need for more women in positions of academic leadership in engineering and to foster the professional growth of women within the academy, SWE developed the Academic Leadership for Women in Engineering (ALWE) program.

The overarching purpose of ALWE is to provide female academics in engineering with tangible skills and knowledge needed to pursue, acquire and gainfully maintain institutional leadership positions at a university. SWE also hopes this program provides women with skills to help them grow personally as leaders.

Participants in the program will experience two-full days and many interactive sessions that will provide best practices to advance in academia while creating opportunities and mechanisms to network across institutions. To that end, the learning outcomes of ALWE are that attendees will be able to:

  • Recognize and apply basic skills for faculty success – including teaching, publishing and acquiring funding
  • Discuss strategies and tools to advance in leadership roles within academia.
  • Discuss the importance of and best practices for implementing inclusive practices at the university level.
  • Expand and support their network of women in academia, focused on similar goals and facing similar challenges.

This year's ALWE program will take place at the WE19 conference in Anaheim, CA on November 6-7, 2019.  Click here to download the tentative agenda for ALWE at WE19. 

Learn about the ALWE program from a few ALWE18 participants.


Travel Funding

In the fall of 2015, SWE, along with six other minority professional engineering society partners, was awarded a four-year grant from the National Science Foundation called ASSIST (Grant No. 1548200) to increase the diversification of the engineering professorate. With the support of the ASSIST grant, SWE will be able to fund up to 40 engineering early faculty, post-doctoral professionals, and graduate students to attend ALWE held at WE19.

SWE will cover flight and hotel expenses and provide a daily per diem of $64 towards additional expenditures. If awarded a travel stipend, recipients must book their travel and hotel through SWE to ensure costs are kept to a minimum. If an ASSIST Travel Grant is awarded, recipients are responsible for attending the entire program for which the grant is intended and complete all pre and post survey evaluations. If you do not attend the entire program, you will be responsible for the travel costs incurred.

Travel Funding Eligibility Guidelines

To be eligible for the ASSIST travel grant, applicants must be a faculty member, post-doctoral scholar, or graduate student in addition to meeting the following criteria:

  • NSF Bio – A biographical sketch that adheres to NSF guidelines.
  • Post-doctoral applicants must have completed a Ph.D. in engineering within 48 months prior to their application.
  • Graduate students must be within one year of graduating with an engineering degree, in good academic standing, and enrolled as full or part-time students.
  • Faculty and post-doctoral applicants must hold engineering appointments in an ABET accredited institution, and faculty from two-year colleges must teach STEM-related courses.
  • Faculty applicants must have held their appointment for five years or less.
  • Must be a US citizen or permanent resident.

To learn more about the program, eligibility requirements and to apply, click here. Applications will be accepted until August 15, 2019. For additional information, please send an email to

Questions about the program? Download the FAQ here.

This project is based upon work partially supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1548200 and through the generosity of the Henry Luce Foundation, Inc.