Program Details

Washington University in St Louis

Updated: September 26, 2019

Total number of tenure-track or tenured faculty


Number of women in tenure-track or tenured faculty positions


[Calculated] Percentage of women in tenure-track or tenured faculty positions


Total number of graduate students


Number of women graduate students


[Calculated] Percentage of women graduate students


Total number of post doctoral associates


Number of women post doctoral associates


[Calculated] Percentage of women post doctoral associates


Is there a family leave policy for graduate students? If so, describe.

Full-time graduate students in Arts & Sciences, including PhD students in Engineering, Business, and Social Work, may request a New Child Leave to assume care for a new child. They should maintain full-time student status. Students on new Child Leave are not expected to participate in mentored teaching or research experience for up to 60 calendar days while they receive their current stipend support. Additional time off without receiving a stipend for up to a full semester will ordinarily be granted by the Graduate School if approved by the student's Department.
Unlike the leaves of absence discussed above, new child leave does not affect the student's full-time status and will not appear on the student's transcript. New child leave must be taken within the first year after the child's birth or adoption. Students should contact their department to request a New Child Leave.
To whatever extent is possible, a new child leave's beginning and ending dates should coincide with those of the academic term (fall, spring, or summer). If longer periods of leave are desired, students will be expected to apply for a Leave of Absence. Students who receive support from external agencies should consult policies and guidelines of the sponsor.

Is there family health insurance for graduate students? If so, is it included in the stipend?

All full-time domestic and international graduate students on the Danforth campus at Washington University in St. Louis, are required to have health insurance, and will be automatically enrolled in the United Healthcare (UHC) Student Resources plan through the university. It is not included in the stipend.
Students may elect to cover dependents under the health or dental insurance plan.

Do you have a Woman in Physics Group? If yes, please include link to their website if they have one.

There is such a group, with 64 members on the email list. It includes a mentoring program for women in the department to act as mentors to younger women in the department - grad students mentoring upperclassmen and upperclassmen mentoring lowerclassmen for example.

Do you have a Physics Graduate Student Association? If yes, please include link to their website if they have one.

The Graduate Student Peer Mentors
are a great resource for students at every stage of the Masters and Ph.D. programs.

What other relevant student groups are there in your institution?

The "Society of Physics Students" runs events for undergraduates.

Has your institution ever hosted a Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics? If yes, which year?


Has your institution ever hosted an APS Climate Site Visit for Women and Minorities in Physics?

Not yet, but this is under active consideration by the Diversity and Inclusion committee.

Please describe why someone applying to graduate school who is interested in a female-friendly department should choose your department.

The department has an active Diversity and Inclusion committee
which works to ensure that we offer a welcoming and inclusive climate and to attract more female and URM students to the PhD and undergraduate programs.
The Physics Mentors provide a peer support group for graduate students, as well as organizing social events such as Friday barbecues and seasonal departmental picnics to keep a strong sense of community in the department.

Please include the name of faculty or staff member and an email they can be reached at for further questions.

Ralf Wessel, Director of Graduate Studies,
Sarah Akin, Grad Student Secretary,

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