Mentorship & Networking


Mentorship & Networking Initiative
Provide tools that empower individuals for career advancement


To provide information, guidance and networking opportunities for research and career success of women in STEM fields through both informal and formal programs.


The Mentorship & Networking Initiative focuses on the development of UC Davis internal resources in support of STEM faculty career success, including:

  1. Mentorship programs
  2. Career skills workshops
  3. Networks to enhance research opportunities and career success

What types of programs for new faculty are supported by the Mentorship & Networking Initiative?

LAUNCH Committees

The LAUNCH committee pilot mentoring program for new faculty: 

  1. Supports early professional integration and development of new faculty as they begin their careers at UC Davis. The committees typically meet twice per quarter in person or by teleconference, 2-3 months before arrival through the end of the first academic year.
  2. Is composed of faculty members, including (at a minimum):
  • A senior faculty member in the new faculty member’s department with related research interests
  • Department Chair
  • Senior faculty member from outside the department, in a field related to that of the new faculty member
  • ADVANCE faculty member (convener of the committee meetings)

New Faculty Network

The New Faculty Network is a faculty-led, grass roots organization at UC Davis that welcomes all new faculty to take part in informal monthly networking events to expand professional networks and knowledge of campus and regional culture.  The UC Davis ADVANCE program provides listserv maintenance and administrative support. To join the NFN mailing list, visit:

New Faculty Reception

Held in collaboration with the Vice Provost Academic Affairs, the New Faculty Reception invites new assistant professors to get acquainted with senior faculty in a relaxed, informal setting.

What types of programs for mid-career and senior faculty are supported by the Mentorship & Networking Initiative?

ADVANCE Scholar Awards

The ADVANCE Scholar Awards is a  prestigious award program and lecture series that is held in conjunction with the Faculty Networking Receptions.  The events are widely advertised and target a multidisciplinary audience of faculty, post-doctoral scholars and students. 

The intent of the ADVANCE Scholar Award program is to encourage research leadership and outreach to underserved communities and/or mentorship of underrepresented students, and to highlight and celebrate the contributions that women STEM faculty at UC Davis have made to their respective fields. Two ADVANCE Scholars are awarded each year, receiving a cash award and delivering a distinguished campus lecture on their research and mentorship activities.

How are ADVANCE Scholars nominated and appointed?

A call for nominations is sent out to all STEM faculty in the spring.  The Mentoring and Networking committee evaluates the nominations based on scientific and mentoring contributions.

Does the Mentorship & Networking Initiative provide resources for the broader campus community?

National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity

Through a partnership between UC Davis ADVANCE, the Vice Provost- Academic Affairs (VPAA), and UCOP, an institutional membership in the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity (NCFDD) is available to all Academic Senate and Academic Federation faculty, post-docs and graduate students at UC Davis.

Faculty are also encouraged to participate in the 15-week Faculty Success Program by the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity (NCFDD) and partial funding is available for faculty.  The Faculty Success Program provides an intense and heavy-accountability structure through which individual faculty engage with the program and learn to implement the professional skill-sets and techniques that NCFDD teaches through their curriculum.

Mentorship & Networking Initiative Event

ADVANCE LAUNCH Committee Lunch
Davis, CA

This lunch is an opportunity to express gratitude for LAUNCH committee member service and discuss lessons learned and best practices from the LAUNCH committees.

When: Friday, May 12, 2017 from 12:30pm-2:00pmWhere: Memorial Union II, Garrison Room

Register by May 5, 2016:

Audience: LAUNCH Committee Members (by invitation only)


2016-2017 ADVANCE Scholars Awarded: JoAnne Engebrecht, Annaliese Franz, and Sharon Strauss

The ADVANCE Scholar Award and lecture series highlights and celebrates the contributions women STEM faculty at UC Davis have made to their fields through outstanding scholarship and mentorship. The three ADVANCE Scholars have been be selected for 2016-17: 

  1. JoAnne Engebrecht, Professor, Molecular and Cellular Biology
  2. Annaliese Franz, Associate Professor, Chemistry
  3. Sharon Strauss, Professor, Evolution and Ecology

The ADVANCE Scholars are presenting their research on November 9, 2016 and May 4, 2017 in the Student Community Center-Multi Purpose Room.


LAUNCH Committee Member Info

Thank you for serving as a LAUNCH committee member!

Serving on a LAUNCH Committee

LAUNCH committees provide support and guidance to new junior faculty as they begin their careers at UC Davis. The committees meet with the new faculty member from the time of hire until the end of the first academic year and aim to facilitate the early professional integration and development of the new faculty member. This program is modeled after similar and very successful efforts at Case Western Reserve University and The University of Michigan.


New Faculty Development Program
UC Davis Academic Affairs

Throughout the academic year, the Office of Academic Affairs sponsors a number of brown bags, workshops and other programs to assist new UC Davis faculty in their professional development.