Program

Current Program

LEAP Alliance

leap-alliance-logo

The LEAP Alliance is an NSF-funded Broadening Participation in Computing Alliance focused on diversifying future leadership in the computing professoriate at research universities as a way to increase diversity across the field of computing.  The problem we address is stark and straightforward:  a very small percentage of the faculty (tenured, tenure-track, teaching, research, instructors) at PhD-granting universities are from the following underrepresented communities:  Black or African-American, Hispanic, or American Indian or Alaska Native (CRA Taulbee Report). 


Our solution is equally stark and straightforward:  we intentionally bring together four cohorts of universities, with each cohort having common strengths and a common agenda to diversity future leadership in the computing professoriate.   The four cohorts provide a comprehensive solution that covers undergraduate students and graduate students.

The LEAP Alliance is focused on four communities that are historically underrepresented in computing: 

  • African Americans
  • Hispanics
  • Native Americans/Indigenous Americans
  • People with Disabilities

The shared purposed and broad vision of the LEAP Alliance is to increase faculty diversity in computing by three main approaches:

  • Increase the diversity of PhD graduates from institutions that are the top producers of computing faculty (based upon data from Jeff Huang) – Cohort 1 and Cohort 2
  • Increase the exposure of academic careers at institutions that already have good diversity in their PhD graduates (based upon IPEDS data) – Cohort 3
  • Increase the retention of diverse undergraduate students at the institutions that send students to graduate school that go on to be faculty (based upon data from Jeff Huang) – Cohort 4

LEAP Alliance Cohorts


Cohort 1
• Carnegie Mellon University
• Cornell University
• Georgia Tech
• Harvard University
• Massachusetts Institute of Technology
• Princeton University
• Stanford University
• University of California, Berkeley
• University of Texas
• University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
• University of Washington

Cohort 2
• California Institute of Technology
• Columbia University
• Purdue University
• University of California, Los Angeles
• University of Maryland
• University of Michigan
• University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
• University of Pennsylvania
• University of Southern California
• University of Wisconsin-Madison
• Yale University

Cohort 3
• Syracuse University
• Tennessee State University
• Texas A&M University
• University of California, Davis
• University of California, Santa Cruz
• University of Colorado Boulder
• University of Maryland, Baltimore County
• University of North Texas


Cohort 4
• Carnegie Mellon University
• Cornell University
• Georgia Tech
• Harvard University
• Massachusetts Institute of Technology
• Princeton University
• Stanford University
• University of California, Berkeley
• University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
• University of Washington

The LEAP Alliance was launched with only Cohort 1 with funding from an NSF INCLUDES demonstration grant, HRD-1806229 (2017-2020) and a grant from the Sloan Foundation (2019 – 2022).    The LEAP Alliance is led by Valerie Taylor (University of Chicago) and Charles Isbell (Georgia Tech).  Stafford Hood and Denice Hood (UIUC-CREA) oversee the evaluation.  The LEAP Alliance also received funding from Google (2020-2022) for dissertation fellowships.

For questions regarding the LEAP Alliance, please send us a message by selecting “LEAP Alliance” for the subject on our contact us page.