The U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) is seeking submissions in a 3-page narrative format describing the evidence-based steps that Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) have taken, or will take, to mitigate the long-term negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the diversity, equity, and inclusion of undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and faculty in STEM higher education programs and institutions. Because the issues vary depending on the impacted STEM population, the challenge is divided into four categories: 1) STEM undergraduates at community and technical colleges; 2) STEM undergraduates at four-year institutions; 3) STEM graduate students and postdoctoral researchers; and 4) STEM faculty. The goals of this competition is to identify actions that IHEs can take to ensure DEI in STEM despite the long-term challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and to share these strategies broadly, including via social media and other means, thereby highlighting the importance of these actions, and providing information for others to implement these actions if applicable to their institutional context.
All eligible IHEs are encouraged and invited to submit descriptions of institutional actions that have been implemented, or will be implemented, such as new and revised policies, procedures, and practices to ensure continued progress toward more diverse, equitable, and inclusive STEM higher education programs and institutions. Submissions from Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) and community and technical colleges are particularly encouraged in all challenge categories for which they are eligible. The challenge first-, second-, and third-place winners will be invited to present their ideas at an NSF-hosted virtual event that will be open to the public, recorded, and made available to the public. For more details, please read the Participant’s Guide in its entirety.
Awards:- $200,000 in total cash prizes will be awarded to winning IHEs. Each of the four categories will have a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place cash-prize winner and up to 10 honorable mention.