Watch a webinar done by Donna Milgram on how to write an effective plan for broadening participation of Women for your NSF ATE Proposal (May 2023).

Guidelines for Writing IWITTS into NSF Grant Proposals

Inquiry Form to Include IWITTS in Your NSF Grant Proposal

Dear Colleagues,

It's coming up on that time of year again—time for many schools to start working on grant proposals for programs such as the National Science Foundation's (NSF's) Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program. I'm happy to say that you've recognized us for helping schools strengthen their proposals and meet their grant goals for broadening participation.

Several schools that have participated in IWITTS's WomenTech Educators Training have gone on to receive grants to expand their efforts to broaden female participation in STEM (see testimonial).

Additionally, I've been a Principal Investigator (PI) on 5 NSF grants including the CalWomenTech Project, which was highlighted by the NSF for demonstrating significant achievement and program effectiveness and chosen as 1 of 3 model projects by the American Association of University Women (AAUW). Download my NSF Bio Sketch here.

I'm always excited about the opportunity to collaborate with schools on moving the needle on Women in STEM, which is why I am sharing the policy we've developed to make sure that any grant proposals including IWITTS are set up for success.

We introduced this policy because in 2019 we were asked 2 rounds of final review questions by NSF Program Officers for grant proposals we didn't know included IWITTS. We've found that too often when we don't partner with schools on grant development, the program design is not set up to be effective for increasing female participation. Also, when we're not part of the planning process, often not enough funding is allocated to achieve activities we're being asked to carry out.

IWITTS's grant policy for being included in National Science Foundation Proposals: IWITTS must receive a Letter of Commitment from the College after we have reached an agreement as to our participation. A Letter of Commitment for the proposed project signed by me—Donna Milgram—must also be included with the proposal. This will ensure that schools including IWITTS in their grant proposals will have the best chance of receiving the grant and meeting their diversity goals.

I will consider putting my full support as a co-PI behind NSF grant proposals that will make an important contribution to the field from schools that have participated in our WomenTech Training in the past. Bringing me in as a co-PI (and IWITTS as a partner), gives proposals with a focus on broadening participation of women an extra boost and gives schools full access to my experience as a 5-time NSF PI.

We have made NSF Program Officers aware of our policy.

Fill out the form to the right to sign up to talk with me about including IWITTS in a grant proposal. 

Priority will be given to those schools who have worked with us in the past, and we're always looking for collaborative partnerships that can make a real difference for women and girls in STEM. Please reach out no later than August for grant proposals with October deadlines.

Together we can move the needle on Women in STEM and CTE.


Donna Milgram

Executive Director - Institute for Women in Trades, Technology & Science 

Donna Milgram

Executive Director


"Originally, we participated in the WomenTech Educators Bootcamp because we were working towards obtaining a National Science Foundation grant and this had been recommended to our college. The Bootcamp gave us a solid foundation to start with, we increased female enrollment by 150% from 4 to 10 female students in our targeted Engineering Technologies course after only one semester. We're happy to say we did receive the NSF grant Increasing Women in Engineering and Industrial Technologies Programs and this will enable us to expand our success in increasing female participation through Industry Partnerships."

~ Tony Bean, Director, Program Chair of Engineering Technologies, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, Salisbury, North Carolina

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