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Breaking Glass

NJIT creates social network to connect women in STEM across the university

By - Last modified: August 22, 2013 at 1:44 PM

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Katia Passerini, interim dean of NJIT's Albert Dorman Honors College
Katia Passerini, interim dean of NJIT's Albert Dorman Honors College - (Aaron Houston/NJBIZ)

Collaboration is vital for women looking to succeed in the world of business. That message is preached so far and wide—from Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg to New Jersey's own Sally Glick—that it's almost gospel.

At the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark, it's not religion; it's science. The university, which is actively working to attract more female students and faculty members, has created a social network that functions sort of like LinkedIn, helping female professors connect with other faculty members at the university who are conducting similar research.

The tool is scheduled to launch across the university this fall, and it will be available to all professors, regardless of gender. But it was developed to help women working in fields that are typically dominated by men connect.

"Women tend to be a little shy in saying they need help," Katia Passerini, the interim dean of NJIT's Albert Dorman Honors College, told me. "There is this need for social interaction, sharing, creating networks."

Here's my story about NJIT's brand new social network and the impact it could have on female faculty members.

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