CBL STEM Scholarships


HERS has received a three-year grant of $450,000 from the Henry Luce Foundation in recognition of the 25th Anniversary of the Clare Boothe Luce (CBL) Program. The one-time grant, for 2016-2018, was made by the Luce Foundation’s Higher Education program and reflects the Foundation’s interest in developing a new generation of diverse and prepared leaders. The grant will allow HERS to award CBL Scholarships for 12 women in STEM fields to attend one of the two HERS Summer Institutes – at the University of Denver and at Bryn Mawr College — from 2016-2018 (36 over the three years).

A key part of the Luce Grant is to create a HERS STEM Community. In 2016, one-third of each Summer Institute class was made up of women who worked in STEM fields.  With support from the Luce Foundation, HERS created the HERS Luce Program for Women in STEM Leadership. CBL Scholarship recipients will participate in the HERS Luce Program during the Summer Institute.

Following the HERS Institute, HERS-CBL participants and other HERS STEM alumnae will continue to gather at conferences and in campus events to provide support and encouragement to each other and to develop strategies for advancing a cadre of women in STEM leadership roles.

HERS-CBL Scholarships

Since 1989, the CBL Program has become one of the most significant sources of private support for women in science, engineering and math in the United States. The Foundation has identified Women’s Leadership in STEM Higher Education as an important next focus of its support of women in STEM.

For the CBL program’s 25th anniversary, the Luce Foundation has funded a three-year program, through a partnership with HERS, offering women in STEM fields a structured opportunity: to enhance and strengthen their leadership skills; to significantly increase their understanding of leadership roles and responsibilities in institutions of higher education; and, to explore, or take steps towards, academic leadership roles in STEM. The HERS Institute opportunity will allow the participants to gain the benefit of exposure to women in academic leadership roles and supportive allies, as well as allowing for the creation of peer and mentor networks.

Agreeing with the Luce Foundation that the advancement of women in STEM higher education requires advancing more women into leadership roles in STEM fields and into senior positions supporting STEM, HERS will draw upon over 40 years of providing leadership development experiences for women in higher education through its intensive residential program, the HERS Institutes.

In addition to receiving targeted support from HERS Alumnae in STEM during the selected Summer Institute, HERS-CBL participants will also make key connections with the larger group of HERS participants, 60 women faculty and administrative leaders in each Institute selected from a broad range of roles at colleges and universities across the country.

Each summer 2016-2018 funding from the Luce Foundation will provide twelve women the opportunity to participate in one of the two HERS Summer Institutes, at the University of  Denver and at Bryn Mawr College, with a total of 36 women completing the HERS-CBL program over the three years. The HERS-CBL Scholarship will cover the following expenses:

  • Tuition, accommodations and meals for the HERS Institute
  • Expenses for travel to and from the selected Institute
  • Expenses for 1½ day Orientation with other HERS-CBL participants before the Institute

For the 2018 Summer Institutes, HERS-CBL Scholarship applications will be accepted beginning September 1, 2017, with a deadline of November 17, 2017. Participants will be notified of their status by January 15, 2018. (If accepted for the Institute but not selected for this scholarship, candidates may attend with alternate support.)

Participant Eligibility

The Henry Luce Foundation grant funds women in STEM fields included in the Clare Boothe Luce Program. Fields included are physical and natural sciences, engineering, computing and mathematics; excluded are medical, health and social sciences. Candidates must be U.S. citizens.

Depending on the pool for specific Institute cohorts, HERS will honor the Luce Foundation’s preference for women who have “significant administrative experience (e.g. served as Department Chair or other senior role), who are moving towards, or have attained the rank of full professorship; and who have expressed a strong interest in or are committed to pursuit of an academic leadership role.” Women faculty in the included STEM fields who are tenured and have a strong interest in STEM leadership but have had more limited leadership roles are also encouraged to apply.

Selection of HERS-CBL candidates will include consideration of the range of factors that are considered for all HERS Institute participants with special attention to criteria related to STEM leadership:

  • Excellence of professional preparation: Strong accomplishment and high regard for the candidate’s contributions to STEM scholarship and teaching, such that colleagues would see her as a credible leader in her own field and in support of STEM and academic excellence more broadly.
  • Achievement in current and past roles and goals for the future: Experience in administrative roles, formal and informal; interest in pursuing advancement into institutional STEM leadership and taking the next steps for that advancement.
  • Self-reflections and leadership analysis: Clarity how the HERS Institute program will help her address both her strengths and development needs.
  • Diversity of ethnic/racial backgrounds, academic fields and institutional types.
  • Commitment to being part of a larger community of STEM women leaders, to assist other women and to cultivate alliances and support for effectiveness.

HERS has a special commitment to diversity of participant backgrounds and institutional affiliations. Women from underrepresented minorities and women employed at community colleges, HBCU’s and tribal colleges are encouraged to apply.

Application Process

HERS-CBL Scholarship candidates will complete the HERS Institute application process, with additional information requested specifically for review of Scholarship criteria. HERS-CBL Scholarship applications will be reviewed by HERS staff and by members of the HERS STEM Alumnae Advisory Group.

The HERS-CBL Scholarship application process begins with an applicant setting up an account and selecting the Summer Institute she would prefer to attend – at the University of Denver or at Bryn Mawr College. Candidates are also asked to indicate a second choice since there are limited spots available for HERS-CBL Scholarship participants at each Summer Institute.  You will be notified if your first location choice is not available.

Note that the application may be completed in one sitting or saved and returned to at a later date before submission.

A complete application includes:

  • HERS Summer Institute Selection
  • Personal Contact Information
  • Professional History
  • Educational History
  • CV/Resume
  • Three (3) Recommenders providing Letters of Support *
    • President/CEO or Chief Academic Officer of your institution
    • Chair, dean, or senior colleague who can speak to your leadership experience or capacity in your STEM field and STEM higher education
    • Scholar from outside your department who can speak to your leadership capacity in your STEM field and STEM higher education
  • STEM Leadership Development Statement (details found on application)
  • STEM Leadership Project Statement (details found on application)

*HERS will contact your identified recommenders directly for letters of support; however, we expect that you will contact recommenders prior to this request. Your application is not considered complete until ALL letters have been received.  Recommendations MUST be received by the application deadline November 17, 2017.

2018 Scholarship Application Dates

Application Deadline:
November 17, 2017 *Applications available September 1, 2017
Notifications Sent:
January 15, 2018
Registration Deadline:
January 31, 2018