WVU Advance

Increasing the Participation and Advancement of Women in Academic Science and Engineering

Meet our interdisciplinary team and what each
one brings to the research project

Fred King

Ph.D. Chemistry

My symbol represents the lower free energy barrier, activation energy, to the change between two states achieved by the use of a catalyst in a chemical reaction. I view ADVANCE as a facilitator, catalyst, for the change we hope to achieve in the climate and culture of WVU with respect to equality and equity.

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Fred King

Jim Nolan

Ph.D. Psychoeducational Processes

The two words represented are "interdependence" (everything is an event with multiple layers involved.) and "wholeness" (we must look as things as a whole, breaking them down to smaller pieces limits your understanding and ability to pieces things together again).

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Jim Nolan

Michelle Withers

Ph.D. Biology

My symbol equated to changing girls brains. I bring a background in neurobiology and training in scientific teaching which uses evidence-based teaching methods and an awareness of diversity issues to improve the success of women and underrepresented minorities in STEM degrees.


Melissa Latimer

Ph.D. Sociology

The symbols simply say to eliminate gender inequality.

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Maura McLaughlin

Ph.D. Physics

My drawing represents the concept of balance. Physicists are very good at balancing different forces to create a stable equilibrium. However, while there are simple equations to do that, work-life balance is very difficult to achieve!


Katie Stores

Ph.D. Political Science

Katie holds a Ph.D. in political science, and contributes her understanding of science policy to the ADVANCE project. Science policy examines the incentives and the environment for discovery and innovation.


Kasi Jackson

Ph.D. Biology

Women's studies is an interdisciplinary field which applies insights from the social sciences, the natural sciences, the humanities and the arts towards innovative solutions for complex problems. My drawing represents the process of bringing people from multiple disciplines together to develop these solutions.


Leslie E. Tower


The International Breastfeeding Symbol was created in 2006. To me, it represents a paradigm shift that I am working toward: creating a workplace more satisfying and equitable for women and families.

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Michele G. Wheatly

Ph.D. Comparative Physiology

As Provost, architect of WVU's Strategic Plan 2020 (2010-2020), and PI of the ADVANCE grant, I have planned for institutionalization of ADVANCE-funded initiatives two years from now.


National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity

West Virginia University has an Institutional Membership with the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity (NCFDD). NCFDD offers resources that are available to an unlimited number of faculty, graduate students, and postdocs on our campus. Dr. Melissa Latimer, is the Institutional Account Representative on campus and the direct liaison between WVU and the NCFDD. Those interested in becoming a member can join WVU’s membership by reviewing the attached document, which thoroughly explains the online registration process. Once their registration is approved, NCFDD will send a welcome email that explains how to access to their new account and what’s specifically included in the membership. Please use this link to access the account membership instructions Getting Started - Activating sub-account memberships

Email us at
Call us at (304) 293-0270
Fax us at (304) 293-0281
Visit us at 287 Chemistry Research Lab
Send us mail at PO Box 6691
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Partial support for this work was provided by the National Science Foundation’s ADVANCE IT Program under Award HRD-1007978. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.