ATSE to elevate women’s leadership in STEM with new funding

Image credit: ATSE.

The Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) has been named the sole implementing partner of the federal government’s $41.2 million fund over 7 years “Boosting the Next Generation of Women in STEM”, through a transformation program called Elevate.

Elevate will award up to 500 undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships to women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

The program aims to address gender inequalities in STEM by fostering more collaborations between industry and women-led universities in applied research and business, developing the skills of women in STEM, and propelling women in leadership positions.

ATSE and its partners will jointly design a high-quality program spanning industry, academia and government to develop women with STEM qualifications, research and business expertise, so they can lead and shape a vibrant and impactful Australian STEM sector.

The program will help create a diverse, inclusive and vibrant STEM ecosystem that can attract, retain and advance girls and women in STEM education and careers, said ATSE CEO Kylie Walker.

“The Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering is delighted to partner with the Australian Government to deliver this game-changing program shaping the culture of the STEM workforce,” Walker said. “Elevate is designed around three pillars: education and impact designed and led by women; skills building, supported by mentoring and networking; and leadership to increase the influence and profile of women in STEM.

“As well as supporting a strong and thriving cohort of future female leaders and role models to enter and excel in Australian STEM jobs, Elevate will foster a collaborative and innovative economy-building culture between Australian universities and Australian industry.”

ATSE’s goal is to immerse these researchers in a network of research and industry leaders to inspire and cultivate their future careers, Walker said.

The Elevate program will complement ATSE’s three existing high-level STEM career path initiatives:

  • IMNIS: Industry Mentoring Network in STEM, an industry engagement, mentoring and internship initiative that will be integrated into the Elevate program
  • STELR: A hands-on school-based STEM curriculum
  • CS in Schools: a digital technology education program connecting classrooms to industry.

“The Academy is uniquely positioned to deliver this transformational agenda given its track record of developing a diverse and inclusive STEM sector and its strong ties between academia, industry and government,” Walker said.

“We look forward to bringing our vast experience in championing women’s empowerment and gender equality in STEM with our strong set of programs dedicated to shaping the future of Australian STEM careers.”

Elevate will be administered and delivered by ATSE as the lead organization working with a diverse consortium of industry and academia partners, including the ATSE Industry Mentorship Network in STEM (IMNIS), the Australian Network of Universities of Technology (ATN), Cooperative Research Australia, Cicada Innovations, FB Rice, DMTC Limited, Gemaker, Women in Leadership Development Program (WILD), Women in STEMM Australia (WiSA) and Science & Technology Australia.

Mara R. Wilmoth