Texas A&M University (TAMU) understands that attracting and retaining exceptional faculty often depends on meeting the needs of two careers. Consequently, the TAMU Dual-Career Program was created in the early 2000s under the leadership of then Dean of Faculties (now Provost) Dr. Karan Watson to: 1) assist faculty candidates and current faculty in balancing their work with the conflicting demands of life events and 2) maintain and strengthen the institution’s ability to recruit and retain diverse faculty of excellence who are part of a dual-career couple. This program, administered through the Office of the Dean of Faculties, focuses primarily on faculty partners seeking a faculty position at TAMU.
In response to a request from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to propose an initiative related to career-life balance for women STEM faculty, the ADVANCE Center submitted a proposal in 2013 for supplemental funds to increase capacity for dual-career support for non-faculty partner placement both on-campus and in the community. Funding was awarded to bring on board a Dual-Career Program Coordinator (DCPC) who works closely with the Office of the Dean of Faculties. The overarching goal of this initiative is to broaden the participation of women in academic STEM fields by reducing barriers to placement for them and their partners. However, this initiative is open to all faculty partners in all disciplines. This effort is in alignment with the NSF’s Career-Life Balance Initiative and the APA’s Psychologically Healthy Workplace, the underlying conceptual framework for TAMU’s ADVANCE Program.