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Funded by National Science Foundation Award Number HRD-1629934
TIGERS ADVANCE: Transforming the Institution through Gender Equity, Retention and Support, is a National Science Foundation (NSF) funded innovative and systematic institutional transformation approach to reduce gender inequality and improve opportunities for all early and mid-career faculty at Clemson, both men and women. Inclusive of all science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, TIGERS ADVANCE is the result of a comprehensive institutional assessment of the barriers that hinder the recruitment, advancement and retention of Clemson’s women and minority faculty; a thorough assessment of Clemson’s history, culture and climate; an extensive review of lessons learned from ADVANCE institutions; and the tight integration of social science research with project activities to inform and support institutional transformation.
Critical to creating perceptions of fairness and support is an understanding of time use, as faculty members’ careers are largely determined by how they spend their time. Institutional constraints and implicit biases differentially affect men’s and women’s time allocations. Consequently, TIGERS ADVANCE will contribute to the understanding of the links between time use and unfair workload allocations in academic settings by measuring faculty time allocation via personal diaries, testing predictions made by organizational identity theory, advancing research in organizational psychology and gender studies, tracking the impact of institutional policy changes, and measuring the overall success of TIGERS ADVANCE as a result of improving institutional opportunities for all faculty.
This is an ideal time to achieve a superordinate identity at Clemson—One Clemson—as the university recently welcomed entirely new executive leadership with demonstrated commitment to inclusive excellence.
President Clements and Provost Jones are both committed to sustaining the positive change that will result from TIGERS ADVANCE initiatives and have agreed to institutionalize many of the programs through future resource commitments after the 5-year term of the grant. TIGERS ADVANCE programs will be subsumed under a Center for Faculty Development and Advancement that will be established under the Provost’s office and funded by the university. The TIGERS ADVANCE executive director will be compensated to lead the center, and the program coordinator hired to assist the director will be converted to a full-time, permanent position.
The proposed management plan is organized around the TIGERS ADVANCE Steering Committee that coordinates the implementation teams assembled to achieve the proposed five goals, communication team, the evaluation team as well as social science research team. The Steering Committee will be responsible for project launch, implementation, research, communication, evaluation, and sustainability.
The Steering Committee involves Institutional leadership, Robert Jones, executive vice president for academic affairs/provost and James Clements, president as well as TIGERS ADVANCE leadership including the Director, Denise Anderson who will be assisted by a Program Coordinator, Paige L. Thomsen. The TIGERS ADVANCE Director serves a 2-year term-limited position to provide leadership opportunities for more junior faculty at Clemson. Once the 2-year term is over, the director steps down to serve as the Past-director for two additional years. The past-director, director and director-elect all serve as part of the steering committee.
COACHE Survey on Job Satisfaction
We are pleased to inform you of an important opportunity you will be offered in the coming days to participate in a survey of faculty job satisfaction. This survey research is part of a national program called the Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE), which has been operating from the Harvard Graduate School of Education since 2003. Participation will entail completing a 25-minute, web-based survey; your unique link to the survey will be emailed to you from COACHE in the coming days. COACHE will not use any name or email address for any purposes except for this research.
While there are many surveys that faculty are asked to complete, this one was designed entirely to determine their current job satisfaction compared to faculty at peer institutions. Your views are especially important to us as we strive to attract and retain the best and brightest scholars and teachers, increase the satisfaction of all faculty, and to make Clemson University a productive and wonderful place to work.
Process, anonymity and utility:
In a process approved by Harvard’s and Clemson University’s institutional review board, COACHE will provide our campus with their summary analysis, as well as the confidential unit-record database, stripped of names and email addresses. The data provided to Clemson University will be received and kept on a secure server by Institutional Research. No administrator, staff or faculty member outside Institutional Research at Clemson University will have access to the unit-record data. Institutional Research will explore and analyze broad patterns in the data to assist with planning and developing improved academic policies and practices across campus. To protect confidentiality and guarantee that the results of this survey cannot influence personnel decisions about individual faculty members, Institutional Research staff will disseminate survey results only with data aggregated in cells of five respondents or more, so that individual faculty and individual departments cannot be identified.
We welcome this opportunity to learn from an independent, research-driven, comparative study. We believe that Clemson University has the potential to be one of the best places for scholars to work, and with your help we can learn how to best support that goal. However, data from the COACHE study will be meaningful only if we have broad participation.