Building faculty leaders

Building faculty leaders

By Life@TheU

Building faculty leaders

By Life@TheU
A Seed for Success (SEEDS) offers University of Miami faculty workshops, networking opportunities, and myriad programs to support their careers while fostering diversity and inclusion.

Launched in 2008, SEEDS—short for A Seed for Success—provides University faculty with the tools and support to succeed at various points in their career, while strengthening diversity and inclusion at the U. The initiatives cover all disciplines across the University’s three campuses. 

Operating under the Office of the Provost through Faculty Affairs, the program’s core mission is to advance the careers of faculty by embracing and celebrating diversity, equity, and inclusion, and by helping to eliminate biases, including those due to gender, ethnicity, race, or disability. Learn more about initiatives that  are available throughout the year.

The choice is yours

SEEDS programs support the development of the University’s diverse faculty and foster a culture of belonging and career satisfaction throughout the University of Miami. Hundreds of faculty have participated in  SEEDS, recognizing the “bottom-up” approach. For example, the You Choose Leadership Awards allow faculty to pitch their own ideas for awards up to $2,500, which are often substantially increased with co-sponsorships. The nature of the awards is up to the investigator, but proposals of departmental, school or University impact are highly encouraged. These awards are then spearheaded by faculty, allowing them to be empowered as leaders, and include professional skills workshops, leadership training, mentoring programs, seminar series, networking, and visits by experts and distinguished speakers.

The 2019-2020 competition has resulted in 13 award recipients. The competitions are announced each summer with an early fall semester deadline and award announcement in early October.  Review program guidelines or contact Ann Schopp at for questions.

Get involved

Aside from applying for a You Choose award, there are a number of opportunities within SEEDS that support faculty as they advance in their careers; including SEEDS Distinguished Scholars Lectures, workshops, and featured events. Learn more

Partnerships with several University units—including the Office of Institutional Culture, Office of the Vice Provost for Research, the Women in Academic Medicine Employee Resource Group, and national initiatives, such as the American Council on Education Women’s Network of Florida—have led to innovative career workshops, leadership panels, and distinguished speakers, empowering the diverse faculty body and helping them form the cornerstone of the University’s strategic vision of an excellent and exemplary university.

Impact of SEEDS

Since its inception, the SEEDS initiative has broadened its scope and impact, from an initial thrust of supporting women in the sciences, to now promoting diversity at schools, colleges, and units around the University’s three campuses. By establishing long-lasting initiatives and co-sponsorships, SEEDS has expanded numerous programs, including the You Choose Awards. Through support from the Office of Institutional Culture, the UDialogue program, which stemmed from a You Choose Award, has opened conversations around diversity and inclusion in all aspects of the University.

SEEDS thrives through internal collaborations and partnerships with the College of Arts and Sciences, Miller School of Medicine, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science,  College of Engineering, Center for Computational Science, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, and many other schools, colleges, and centers. Specifically, a long-lasting co-sponsorship with the Rosenstiel School has created multi-year mentoring workshops that cultivate mentoring relationships between University faculty and students. This partnership has also encouraged the idea of incorporating graduate students to advance research that aids in faculty development. Additionally, SEEDS has implemented workshops around implicit bias, work/life balance, and research/grant writing that have taken place throughout the University.

Learn more at