UMass ADVANCE established an annual distinguished lecture and awards ceremony beginning in 2019 as part of our NSF ADVANCE-Institutional Transformation grant. We are funded by the National Science Foundation to create institutional transformation that ensures long-term gender equity for STEM faculty, including women faculty of color, at the UMass Amherst campus.
UMass ADVANCE selects a distinguished speaker, each year, representing different areas of STEM. ADVANCE Distinguished Lecturers are invited to give a talk of their choosing that centers gender equity in science and engineering, with an intersectional lens.
This year's lecture will be given by Enobong (Anna) Branch, senior vice president for equity at Rutgers University on March 28, 2023 from 4:00-6:00pm at the Old Chapel.
In 2019 Dr. Gilda Barabino (chemical engineer and member of the National Academy of Engineering) spoke from her personal experience about “A Counternarrative from a Woman of Color in STEM.”
In 2020 the ADVANCE distinguished lecture was postponed due to the Pandemic.
In 2021 Dr. Shirley Malcom, life scientist and national science policy leader spoke about work based on her leadership role directing the SEA Change initiative at American Association for the Advancement of Science. Her talk, “Science in the Time of COVID and America’s Reckoning with Race” was delivered on zoom.
In 2022 Dr. Timnit Gebru, founder and executive director of the Distributed Artificial Intelligence Research Institute (DAIR) and co-founder of Black in AI spoke on, "The Hierarchy of Knowledge in Machine Learning and Its Consequences."