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Application Guidelines

Goal: Faculty in science and engineering who have or adopt a child can face unique challenges. Because women are traditionally underrepresented among tenured and tenure-track faculty in science, math, and engineering departments, USC takes special care to address the needs of those dealing with issues of pregnancy, birth of a child, and adoption. In addition, scientists and engineers whose laboratory research involves exposure to physically hazardous conditions may face special difficulties in continuing their laboratory work during pregnancy. Faculty who wish to maintain their career trajectory while also raising a family may also have particular concerns about the effects of a reduced work load on departmental performance evaluations following the birth or adoption of a child, and the effects of family-related leave and extension of the tenure clock on decisions regarding tenure and promotion. Using the networking and financial support now available to faculty through the WiSE Program, we hope to address the situation and help overcome many of the obstacles that potentially adversely affect the careers of WiSE faculty with families.

Note that the WiSE Support for Faculty for Childbirth and Adoption Program augments the Provost’s Family Friendly Initiative and the new Center for Work and Family Life by directly addressing the special difficulties experienced by WiSE faculty who give birth or adopt a child.

Eligibility: Any tenured or tenure-track USC faculty member in a WiSE-eligible department in the sciences or engineering is eligible. Applicants must demonstrate a strong justification for how receipt of funds will serve to increase the representation of women in science and engineering.

Application Process: WiSE faculty in need of childbirth/adoption support should contact the Director of the WiSE Program, Leana Golubchik at or 213-740-0996.

Funding: The WiSE Program will work with the faculty member to determine the best potential options for providing support. The following may be among the possibilities and all requests should be directed to the WiSE Program Director:

  • The WiSE Program may, when necessary, contribute to the cost of hiring a lecturer to teach the course/courses of the WiSE faculty member for the period of the agreed modified duties, beyond the period covered by other support. Decisions about funding will be made by the WiSE Program Director in consultation with the appropriate dean.
  • WiSE faculty whose grants/contracts are negatively affected by childbirth or adoption may receive priority for funding through the WiSE Major Support for Faculty Program during the first two years after the birth or adoption of a child. The WiSE faculty member should inform the WiSE Program Director about any possible disruptions in funding so that the appropriate consideration may be given to WiSE Major Support for Faculty grant proposals.


Additional Resources: Since obtaining access to comprehensive information about the policies and options for support related to pregnancy, childbirth and adoption, can be overwhelming, we include here links to some of the relevant options and benefits that are available to faculty.