Case Study on Mentoring Programs for Women in STEM

Screenshot at  PMA Look at STEM Mentoring for Women in Academia in Germany and Austria: The underrepresentation of women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields is a global issue. Recent statistics reveal that the global representation of female STEM students is approximately 35% — and drops to 28% for doctoral students. Global efforts to address the gender disparity in women’s representation and engagement in STEM have become an issue of international importance, with STEM mentorship programs emerging as a powerful tool for empowering and supporting women pursuing STEM careers. 

Building on robust discussions and recommendations from individuals in the Austria, Germany, and the United States who participated in research roundtables in 2022, SWE undertook a qualitative study to understand the various activities of mentoring programs for women in STEM academia across four higher education institutions in Austria and Germany. The specific programs were recommended because they were well-known to the roundtable participants as strong and supportive programs for women in STEM.

Through virtual interviews with study participants involved with the identified mentoring programs, SWE developed a report to highlight the mentorship program effectiveness, program design, best practices, and lessons learned in addressing the gender disparity in STEM.

Read the research report to learn about the best practices associated with the following recommendations:

  • Adaptability, commitment, and inclusive collaboration
  • Institutional support and leadership involvement
  • Reciprocal mentorship
  • Personalized mentor-mentee matching
  • Building awareness and outreach