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Funding Opportunities

WHOI Doherty Chairs in Education Academic Programs Office

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) Faculty Advisor

Description of Selection Process and Expectations

June 2023 - Summer 2023 call is closed. A new call will released in Summer 2024. For questions contact Natalie Nevarez

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) Doherty Chairs in Education provide JP faculty members with needed time to focus on and engage in projects to improve or enhance educational offerings at WHOI.  The Doherty Chair in Education award provides salary time as well as additional funds necessary for the success of the project or proposed effort. Members of WHOI's JP Faculty are eligible to apply, including pre-tenure Scientific Staff and Senior Technical Staff members who are JP faculty.

DEI Faculty Advisor Description

The primary selection criteria is the potential for the proposed efforts to contribute to WHOI’s academic programs and to efforts to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion within these programs and WHOI overall. Up to two new 2-year awards will be made based on a competitive process requiring a short (1-2 page) proposal that describes efforts that would be made to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion within WHOI’s education programs. The primary selection criteria will be the potential of proposed actions to enhance recruitment efforts, to enhance training efforts and opportunities (e.g., for faculty, mentors, postdocs, students), and/or to make WHOI a more welcoming, equitable, and inclusive environment for WHOI’s students and postdoctoral researchers. The goal is for the Doherty Chair DEI Faculty Advisors to work in tandem with WHOI’s CDEIO Natalie Nevarez and the WHOI Dean to address the DEI needs of WHOI’s academic programs.


An application consists of a short statement (two pages or less) outlining a plan that would improve recruitment into, and/or inclusivity within, WHOI’s academic programs, and a short, NSF-style CV that includes a description of past contributions to educational and to diversity and inclusion efforts. Applications should be submitted directly to Interim Dean Evans no later than August 11th, 2023.

These Doherty Chair DEI Faculty Advisors could provide support for any of WHOI’s academic programs, including the MIT-WHOI Joint Program, Postdoctoral Program, Summer Student Fellow Program, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Program, WHOI-CCCC-UMassD Blue Economy Intern Program, and K-12 activities, or could address more general needs for faculty, students, or postdoctoral researchers. For the purposes of this award, diversity, equity and inclusion activities within WHOI’s academic programs might include, for example, activities that improve student and postdoc recruitment (for example through developing personal contacts at multiple different institutions and within the diversity offices of those institutions; collaboration with the DEI Office’s WHOI Ambassadors project); development of an emerging scholars speaker series; actions to make WHOI a more welcoming place for students and postdocs from groups under- represented in the ocean sciences (e.g., through collaborative efforts with the DEI Office and the new Director of Learning & Development focused on effective training programs for faculty and other mentors, mentoring programs, workshops); efforts to bring visiting scientists to WHOI for lectures or longer visits); other special programs. Proposals that do not directly address education related topics are outside of the scope of the intended use of Doherty Chairs in Education Award and will not be funded.

Following selection, DEI Faculty Advisors will report to the Dean and will work with the CDEIO Natalie Nevarez, and may work with Education Assembly, APO Staff, Education Coordinators, MIT-WHOI Joint Committees, as well as with MIT-WHOI JP students and WHOI postdoctoral researchers, and with the WHOI Committee for Diversity and Inclusion (including its Academic Recruitment Group and Community Building Group), and the MIT Institute Community & Equity Office.

The Dean and Dr. Nevarez will work with a selection committee consisting of the WHOI Education Council, with input from the WHOI Committee for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, to recommend the Chair recipients to the WHOI President and Director and the Board of Trustees. Up to two new awards will be effective September 1, 2023.


Each award will consist of 152 hours/year of faculty time for two years, funded through income from the Henry L. and Grace Doherty Professor of Oceanography fund. Two awards are possible in 2023. Additional funds of up to $20,000 per year (or ~$12,000 to $12,500 before APO applies its overhead rate*) may be requested for the faculty advisor or other's travel; travel for visitors to WHOI; supplies; and/or other expenses in support of the DEI Faculty Advisor's efforts. At the time of proposal submission this initial budget need not be in final form, but should provide a best initial guess of support needed to accomplish proposed activities. If funded, after six-months in the position, a formal revised budget for the additional funds (of up to $20K each year including overhead) will be requested by the Dean to accommodate plans as they develop. Funds awarded must be spent no later than one year after the conclusion of the award period.

Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact WHOI CDEIO Natalie Nevarez and Interim Dean Rob Evans with any questions and/or to discuss possible proposal ideas.

*(note that the APO MTDC rate differs from the research rate; we will provide an update once that rate is set for 2023 and 2024).