Innovative Genomics Institute promotes equity in science

By The Science Advisory Board staff writers

March 2, 2022 -- The Innovative Genomics Institute (IGI) has launched the HS Chau Women in Enterprising Science Program (WIES) to promote gender equity in science and entrepreneurship as part of its mission to advance genome research for a better world.

With philanthropic support from the foundation of Solina Chau Hoi Shuen, the program is now accepting proposals from aspiring entrepreneurs seeking to translate genomics research into impactful solutions for real-world challenges and advance the representation of women founders in biotechnology.

The program will be split into two phases. During phase I, up to four WIES Fellows will be selected and provided support to conduct foundational research for the early stages of their entrepreneurial ideas. After a period of one year, up to two Fellows from phase I will be selected to enter phase II as WIES Entrepreneurs. If selected to enter the second phase, they may secure funding directly from the HS Chau Foundation, while continuing to have access to the IGI's entrepreneurial community for 1.5 additional years.

A total of four cohorts of fellows will be supported by the program over the coming years, with the individuals in the first cohort beginning their fellowships in September 2022. Overall, the program will provide up to 2.5 years of financial, scientific, and educational support for the program participants. Fellows will have opportunities to engage in formal and informal collaborations, dedicated lab space, individual mentoring, and access to an active and engaged scientific board, including members from the IGI's network of diverse entrepreneurs.

Applications received by April 1, 2022, will receive priority for consideration, but applications will be accepted until April 30, 2022. Selected WIES Program Fellows will be announced by June 1, 2022.

IGI is a nonprofit partnership between the University of California, Berkeley and the University of California, San Francisco with the mission to use genome engineering to solve humanity's greatest problems in health, climate, and sustainable agriculture.

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