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Women Faculty

Supporting our women faculty members' careers and providing avenues to strengthen their community are important components of our work to enhance the success of all our faculty. Our work is conducted in partnership with the Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion, the Faculty Senate, the Organization of Women Faculty, Feinberg Medical Women Faculty Organization, and the Women's Center

Questions can be directed to Joan Marie Johnson, Director for Faculty, Office of the Provost, at

Provost's Advisory Council on Women Faculty

The Provost’s Advisory Council on Women Faculty, a group of approximately fifty women and men faculty from across the schools, convened from 2016-2020 to identify ways to strengthen our supports for women and women-identified faculty.

The Council focused its work on developing recommendations in five key areas that are of particular importance in supporting our women and women-identified faculty. These areas are: mentoring, retention, pipeline advancement, work-life resources, and development and leadership opportunities for women and women-identified faculty.

The excellent work of the Council has been instrumental in:

  1. Developing a set of guidelines and resources to support Faculty Searches,
  2. Establishing the Provost Faculty Mentoring Program,
  3. The hire of Northwestern University’s first Ombudsperson,
  4. Enhancing the suite of training available through the Faculty Leadership Program,
  5. Revising the Policy on Faculty Family Leave and Extending the Probationary Period for Tenure-Track Faculty, and
  6. Creating the Faculty Work/Life and Family Resources brochure.

We continue to work on finding ways to make incremental progress on many of the other recommendations that were developed by the Council. In particular, we are drawing on many of the findings and recommendations to inform the development of proposals for enhancing faculty research and career supports. 


National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine: Action Collaborative on Preventing Sexual Harassment in Higher Education

Northwestern is one of 28 founding members of the NASEM Action Collaborative, formed as a response to the National Academies’ 2018 report, Sexual Harassment of Women: Climate, Culture and Consequences in Academic Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. More information about this Collaborative and action plans for Northwestern will be posted here as they develop.

150 Years of Women

In Fall 2019, we marked 150 years since women were first admitted to Northwestern through a yearlong celebration of our catalysts—past, present and future—individuals who take risks, chart their own course and inspire change. Learn more.