Graduate Women in Science (GWIS) is a national organization whose mission is to promote women in the fields of science, technology and mathematics. The goal of the Chicago branch of GWIS is to provide professional advancement opportunities to women in science within the Chicago area. Learn More.



 March 6th, 2019

2019 Annual GWIS Chicago Travel Grant Application
Application is now open. Membership is required. Email us at to get an application package.
If you are not a member of our organization yet, we encourage you to join us and participate in this opportunity and from in other events scheduled throughout the year. Register here.

We are also in need of reviewers for our travel award session! Send us an email if you are interested!

March 9th, 2019
Call for nominations: Be a GWIS Chicago Leader! 
We are looking for motivated young scientists-in-training to join our board of officers for the 2019-2010 school year.
Available positions:
Vice President:
  • Shall act in the absence of the President, assuming all her/his duties and obligations
  • Shall perform additional duties as the President may from time to time
  • Serve a minimum of 1 year

National Liaison

  • Shall work for effective participation of chapter members in the business of the National Organization, seeking out capable members who may be recommended for national office or for national
  • Be the chapter consultant on the National Constitution and
  • If possible, attend the Grand Chapter meeting and assist the chapter president in obtaining chapter delegates to Grand Chapter
  • Serve a minimum of 1 year, preferably longer

Contact us at if interested and/or to learn more about these responsibilities

February 19th, 6:00 – 8:00 PM

Academic Career Panel Discussion and Networking

Goethe Institut (150. Michigan Ave, Suite 200, Chicago, IL)

RSVP here



Jamie Roitman, Associate Professor & Director of Graduate Studies, Behavioral Neuroscience, University of Illinois at Chicago

Dr. Roitman completed a PhD in Neurobiology and Behavior from the University of Washington in 2002, followed by a post-doctoral fellowship at Duke University. Her research focuses on how substances commonly used during adolescence, such as cannabinoids and alcohol, alter brain maturation and the decision-making functions that depend on it. In addition to numerous federally funded grants, Dr. Roitman is frequently recognized for her tireless contribution to teaching and promoting STEM education. She is a recent recipient of the Silver Circle Award for Excellence in Teaching by the University of Illinois at Chicago. Outside of the lab, she frequently encourages her own 4 adolescents to make good choices.


Barbara Stranger, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Genetic Medicine, University of Chicago

Dr. Stranger is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Genetic Medicine at the University of Chicago. In addition, she is a Faculty Fellow in the Institute for Genomics and Systems Biology and The Center for Translational Data Science. Her lab analyzes multi-dimensional human genomics data, particularly transcriptome data and genetic variation data, in the context of health and disease. She develops effective analytic approaches for large-scale analysis of functional genomics data, and applies systems biology methodologies to integrate data of different types to inform biology of complex traits. She is a member of the Analysis Working Group (AWG) of NIH’s Genotype-Tissue Expression (GTEx) project, and leads the Sex Differences Working Group within the GTEx AWG. Current projects in her laboratory focus on understanding mechanisms and consequences of sexual dimorphism in: 1) Genetic regulation of gene expression in GTEx, 2) Genetic regulation of protein expression in GTEx, 3) Genetic architecture of neuropsychiatric traits, and 4) Genetics and genomics of cancer and response to therapy. She has a longstanding interest in evolution, and also applies the tools and approaches of population and evolutionary genetics to her research areas.


Colleen Rosemarie Zaccard, Postdoctoral Fellow, Physiology, Northwestern University & Chair of the Chicago Women in STEM Initiative 

Dr. Colleen Zaccard is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Physiology at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine, where her research focuses on the rapidly evolving field of neuro-immunology. Her long-standing interest in immunology, infectious diseases, and public health began when she was an undergraduate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and continued with her predoctoral research on novel mechanisms of immune cell communication during HIV infection at the University of Pittsburgh. She currently utilizes enhanced-resolution, live-cell microscopy techniques to investigate dynamic neuro-immune cell cross-talk in health and neuro-psychiatric disorders, i.e., Alzheimer’s disease. Dr. Zaccard is also a strong advocate for gender equity and diversity in STEM, where women are still under-represented at advanced career stages and in leadership. As inaugural Chair of the Northwestern University Postdoctoral Association’s Chicago Women in STEM Initiative, she leads a team of over 20 postdoctoral and student volunteers in implementing programs to support the success of early-career women. They recently launched STEM Circuits, an interdisciplinary mentoring program at Northwestern that drew over 160 registrants, and they are planning a second annual conference on International Women’s Day to raise community awareness of implicit bias in STEM. Dr. Zaccard and colleagues were recently awarded a 2019 Daniel I. Linzer Grant for Innovation in Diversity and Equity by the office of the Provost in support of these ongoing efforts. Dr. Zaccard was also selected as a 2019 Leadership Fellow by the Northwestern Center for Leadership, which emphasizes the utilization of interdisciplinary teams to conduct research and shape a diverse and inclusive campus landscape.