TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program is a leadership and research program for women that combines hands-on experience in science and engineering research with an introduction to higher education in the United States and opportunities for career exploration, English language enrichment, cultural engagement, and collaboration with American students. Hosted by Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and Rice University in Houston, Texas – two of the top research universities in the U.S. – the program includes a three-week virtual experience and a five-week research internship. It is limited to just 10 participants, allowing for a personalized experience.
This program is generously funded by Dow Chemical Japan Limited.
TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program 2022-2023
Ten female students majoring in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) from seven different universities in Japan participated in the TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program 2022-23. The program began with an online orientation hosted by Lehigh University on September 20, followed by a five-week research internship in February and March 2023 in the U.S.
Students traveled to either Lehigh University in Pennsylvania or Rice University in Texas. Each student was assigned a professor as an advisor and a graduate student or postdoc mentor. The students had diverse backgrounds and were hosted by various science and engineering laboratories.
The program catalyzes participants to pursue research and graduate study further and offers an opportunity for cultural exchange. This year, the research projects the students worked on a variety of projects. They ranged from reducing the mixed metal oxide to investigating the effects of atlastin on the mitochondria of muscle cells in drosophila. In addition to participating in research, the students engaged in many career and leadership development workshops and activities. Workshop topics included applying to U.S. graduate schools, communicating in different cultures, creating presentations, searching and applying for jobs, and panel discussions with female STEM researchers. Students learned so much through the program, not just academically in the research lab but also through cultural experiences and lessons, as well as making life-long friends who are also female STEM students.
TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program 2021-2022
Japanese Female University Students in STEM successfully completed an in-person program in the United States
From February 12 through March 16, 2022, nine Japanese female university students traveled to the U.S. and successfully completed the in-person portion of 2020-2021 TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and Rice University in Texas. This program is a research internship program for female undergraduate students from Japan who are majoring in science and engineering. Read More>>
The 2021-22 Program Kicked Off with Virtual Programming
Ten students from universities throughout Japan were selected for the 2021-22 program, representing fields such as applied physics, biology, and mechanical engineering. In September 2021, a series of virtual workshops and cultural exchanges for the program participants were conducted. The purpose of the virtual programming was to prepare students for their in-person research internships, which are scheduled to begin in February 2022. Read More>>