Welcome to FOCUS

FOCUS on Health & Leadership for Women (FOCUS) is a dean-funded program at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania designed to improve the recruitment, retention, advancement and leadership of women faculty, and to promote education and research in women’s health and leadership.

FOCUS collaborates with other medical schools, universities, national committees, and Women in Medicine (WIM) programs in order to explore institutional change that fosters a more diverse faculty in the community of academic medicine.


FOCUS Initiatives include:

OVERVIEW SUMMARY OF FOCUS INITIATIVES (click title for pdf download)

Benchmarks: Gender Statistics
Comprehensive biennial report on the gender distribution of Penn medical faculty by track, rank, department, and leadership position including comparisons to AAMC national statistics and to Penn historical reports from as far back as 1999.

Lunchtime Seminar Series
Presentations by faculty experts that explore a broad range of topics: current medical issues and controversies, women’s health research, and faculty development.  All faculty, men and women, are invited.

Annual Fall Leadership Mentoring Conference
"Successful Strategies for Women in Academic Medicine," a daylong, networking and professional development program with nationally recognized speakers that focuses on the opportunities and challenges facing women in academic medicine.

Junior Faculty Investigator Award
Offers competitive grants for twelve months to junior faculty investigators (men and women) for pilot research related to women’s health (an extramurally supported initiative).   

Medical Student Fellowship in Women’s Health
Offers competitive six-month grants for medical students (men and women) to take time out from the traditional curriculum to conduct a faculty-mentored research project in women’s health (an extramurally supported program).

Women’s Health Scholar Certificate
Provides medical students (men and women) a concentrated experience over three years in women's health spanning research, clinical training, and community outreach (jointly sponsored by FOCUS and OB/GYN).

Award for the Advancement of Women in Medicine
Recognizes annually a faculty member whose efforts and achievements have promoted the career success, leadership, and overall quality of life for Penn women in academic medicine.

Section for Women Residents & Fellows
Provides women trainees with multiple career development opportunities via presentations and workshops focused on critical skills and resources for advancement in academic medicine and work-life balance. 

The NIH-TAC Trial (Transforming Academic Culture)
FOCUS leadership assembled a multidisciplinary team of researchers to develop and conduct this cluster‐randomized study within the School of Medicine, a unique, landmark intervention trial funded by a 4-year NIH-RO1 grant.