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Mid CMW-L (formerly known as CAPP-L)

Mid Career Mentoring Workshop - Labs

Deb Agarwal
Mid CMW-L Co-Director


The goal of the Mid CMW-L workshop is help mid-career women working in industry or government research labs significantly advance in their careers, either to reach the top of the technical ladder as a distinguished scientist or fellow, or to enter into upper management.

Intended Audience. The workshop targets mid-career lab researchers. We define "mid-career" to mean someone roughly equivalent to an Associate Professor in academia, i.e., well established at her institution and in her research/technology community, but looking to advance further. In the world of industry and government labs, the corresponding job titles vary from institution to institution. For example, at Sun the appropriate title might be staff engineer to senior staff engineer. At AT&T or Sandia National Labs, it would be Senior or Principal Member of the Technical Staff. If you are unsure whether you qualify for the program, please inquire.

Speakers. The speakers at Mid CMW-L workshops are Distinguished Researchers from industry and government labs. 

Full and partial scholarships are available for individuals whose labs are unable to providing funding.

Workshop Structure. The Mid CMW-L workshop is integrated with the Mid CMW-E and Mid CMW-R workshops, which focus on helping associate professors at teaching and research colleges and universities get promoted to full professors. Some sessions are divided into tracks with material of particular relevance to each of the three groups. Other sessions of general relevance bring all participants together. Sessions specific to the Mid CMW-L track may include:

  • How to Reach the Top of the Technical Ladder, addresses topics such as the factors that go into promotion decisions (company contributions, publications, patents, leadership activities, etc.), how these factors are weighted, how one learns what these factors are, how to avoid/cope with layoffs, and how to get support for innovative rather than incremental research.

  • Managing Up and Managing Down, which focuses on how to manage, what such positions involve, how to cope with difficult personnel, how higher-level management positions differ from first-line management positions, and how to represent  your work and group to upper management.

  • Leading Initiatives. Jobs in research labs offer a many opportunities with the concomitant challenge of managing them. This panel discusses the ins/outs of building political support for and successfully launching a new initiative.

Each such session is lead by senior women from research labs with relevant experiences and consists of a formal presentation and then an open discussion.

Plenary topics include panels on such topics as Building Collaborations/Peer Network, Representing Yourself Outward, Leading Initiatives, and Effective Leadership. As with the track panels, each includes a formal presentation and an open discussion.

Speed Mentoring Session.

In addition to the above content, there will be a speed mentoring session with the speakers serving as mentors.