IThrive Collective

Join us in a BIPOC Faculty Counterspace to Inform Transformation in the Academy


The IThrive Collective is a supported networking and professional development community offering virtual gatherings (webinars), coffee hours, and meet-ups at national convenings. The collective’s aim is to enhance the professional success of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) STEM faculty and promote connection, collaboration, and community among BIPOC and ally/other-identified faculty across Aspire Alliance institutions. The collective aims to establish a counterspace* for BIPOC STEM faculty across the country.


Ultimately, the collective is designed to gather input and reflection from BIPOC voices to inform institutional transformation efforts towards increased diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEM.

Who Can Join?

Membership is currently limited to BIPOC** and ally/other-identified*** STEM faculty, leaders, and change makers at institutions that are members of the NSF INCLUDES Aspire Alliance, including participants and graduates of the IAspire Leadership Academy. IThrive Collective events will provide separate spaces for BIPOC faculty and ally/other-identified faculty.

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IThrive Collective Definitions

*Counterspaces are sites of resistance and adaptive response that support and enable individuals from marginalized groups to collectively push back on dominant narratives. Learn more at https://www.campus-counterspaces.com.

**Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. We are inspired, in part, by the work and design of the BIPOC Project.

**** Ally/other-identified individuals are people who do not identify as BIPOC but are invested in equity-focused transformation in the STEM academy. We invite all ally/other-identified folks who may be at various places in their journey of learning/un-learning. Self-identification as an "ally" does not always result in action that aligns with the needs and desires of BIPOC folk. The IThrive "ally" community seeks to be guided by our BIPOC members, and has considered self-descriptors such as "advocate", "partner", and "DEI activist" to better reflect our roles and responsibilities in service of the BIPOC counterspace.

Upcoming Gatherings

IThrive 2022-2023

Based on discussion with IThrive Collective members, the IThrive planning team has set the following agenda for 2022-2023. Virtual Gatherings are intended as working meetings to identify sites and strategies for collective action. Virtual Coffee Hours are intended as support spaces for BIPOC faculty who are seeking community, mutual aid, and relationship building. In addition, when possible, we'll engage in informal meet-ups at national meetings to further community building.

October 2022

  • Virtual Gathering:

Join us on October 31 from 12:00 - 1:30 PM ET.

Register Here!

November 2022

  • Virtual Coffee Hour:

Join us on November 15 from 1:30 - 2:30 PM ET.

Register Here!

December 2022

  • Virtual Gathering:

Join us on December 12 from 12:00 - 1:30 PM ET.

Register Here!

January 2023

  • Virtual Coffee Hour

Join us on January 25, 2023 12;00 - 1:00 PM ET.

Register Here!

February 2023

  • Virtual Gathering

Join us on February 7 from 12:00 - 1:15 PM ET.

Register Here!

March 2023

  • Virtual Coffee Hour

Join us on March 20 from 12:00 - 1:00 PM ET.

Register Here!

April 2023

  • Virtual Gathering

Join us on April 17 from 12:00 - 1:15 PM ET.

Register Here!

May 2023

  • Virtual Coffee Hour

Join us on May 10 from 12:00 - 1:00 PM ET.

Register Here!

June 2023

  • Virtual Coffee Hour


July 2023

  • In-Person Gathering at the NSF INCLUDES Aspire Alliance 2023 Summit


Past Gatherings

IThrive 2021-2022

An Ongoing Counterspace Conversation

How do we make the campuses of the IChange Network more inclusive and supportive of BIPOC faculty?

How Institutions Act

Concluded May 9, 2022

How Institutions Feel

Concluded Feb 16, 2022

How Institutions Look

Concluded Nov 30, 2021


Three conversations held with BIPOC and Ally leaders, change makers, and faculty to explore what BIPOC faculty really need from their institutions.

IThrive 2020-2021

Q&A with Professional Society Networks

Concluded May 19, 2021

Laurette Blakey Foster, Ed.D.

HBCU Faculty Development Network


Prairie View A&M University

Director, Center for Teaching Excellence

Professor of Mathematics

Olga Bolden-Tiller, Ph.D.

Minorities In Agriculture Natural Resources And Related Sciences


Tuskegee University


Professor of Animal Sciences


Head - Dept. of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences


Asst. Dean - College of Agriculture, Environment and Nutrition Sciences

Esther Gonzalez, MPA, MBA

Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers

Programs Manager

Ann Kimble-Hill, Ph.D.

American Chemical Society


Indiana University School of Medicine

Assistant Research Professor of Biochemistry

IUPUI PREP Program Coordinator

Chad Womack, Ph.D.

Ernest E. Just Life Science Society


United Negro College Fund

Senior Director, National STEM Programs and Initiatives

Ask a Research Center Rep: Building Connections to Advance Research Success

Concluded February 12, 2021

Paul Gueye, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Nuclear Physics - Experimental

National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL)

Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) at Michigan State University

Ja’Wanda S. Grant, Ph.D.

Lead, University Engagement and Student Affairs

Office of Research Excellence

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Ellen Morris, Ph.D.

Director, University Partnerships Program

National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)

Blair D. F. Singleton, M.S.

Electrical Engineer, Applied Physics Laboratory

John's Hopkins University

Ask A Program Officer: Building Connections to Advance Research Success

Concluded November 23, 2020

Christine Grant, Ph.D.

Program Director, Engineering Education and Centers Division, National Science Foundation

Desirée L. Salazar, Ph.D.

Program Director, Division of Training, Workforce Development, and Diversity, National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Dawn Tilbury, Ph.D.

Assistant Director, Directorate for Engineering, National Science Foundation

Kristine Willis, Ph.D.

Program Director, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health