Trailblazers: Provost's Mentoring Initiative for Faculty


Trailblazers and Executive Mentors at Meet and Greet

Transforming the Institution through Gender Equality, Retention and Support


Interested in applying and want to learn more? Join our virtual Q&A information session on August 20th at 4pm here.


This initiative will prepares faculty for leadership roles in academic or professional organizations while furthering institutional diversity. All 40 academic departments at Clemson are invited to participate in the Trailblazers program. Our 4th cohort will convene from September 2020 to May 2021. Due to COVID-19, measures have been put in place to move to a virtual format if necessary. Focusing on the unique challenges of leadership in higher education, this initiative will provide experiential leadership training that will. To date, 85 faculty have participated in the program. Trailblazer participants will receive the following as part of the program:

  • Leadership and individual development
  • Experience working on a leadership project that advances gender equity
  • Match with an executive mentor
  • Contacts with Clemson leadership
  • Social learning and networking with other Trailblazers

 This year’s program will be co-led by Drs. Cynthia Sims and Angie Carter from Human Resource Development, College of Education and Dr. Karen High from Engineering and Science Education, College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences.


Trailblazers will be selected by the TIGERS Advance Executive Leadership Committee via a competitive nomination/application, screening, and selection process intended to identify those who have career aspirations to become academic leaders and who demonstrate potential to contribute to and support furthering institutional diversity.

Applicants will submit curriculum vitae, a statement of interest, and a commitment letter from the applicant’s department head. Each department chair will be asked to reduce service or teaching responsibilities of the Trailblazers. The Trailblazers program is open to all faculty as Clemson needs both women and men leaders who recognize the barriers that women face and understand the importance of an inclusive campus environment for faculty success. However, to address the current deficit of women academic leaders at Clemson, at least 50 percent of the Trailblazers will be women. An expectation of the program is that participants will attend all scheduled sessions. Exceptions will need to be cleared in advance with the program’s co-directors.

Department Chair Support Letter

Chairs should comment on the candidates interested in applying for the TIGERS Advance Trailblazer program as well as provide a plan for releasing some of the applicants’ service or teaching time for the 2020/21 academic year. This release will allow the applicants to fully engage in this program.


 As part of the selection process, applicants will complete surveys and provide names of someone who leads them and individuals whom they have led to provide them with feedback.


Please use the following link to apply for the program: The application deadline is August 31, 2020. For more information, please contact the program co-lead: Dr. Angie Carter Candidates will be notified on their application status in late August.


Program Calendar 

2020 2021
September 4, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM January 15, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM
October 2, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM February 5, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM
November 6, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM March 5, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM
December 4, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM April 2, Friday, 1:00 – 3:00 PM
May 10, Monday, 10:00 – 3:00 PM

Read quantitative study about the Trailblazers program here