Academic Mamas Foundation

Empowering Academic Mamas by awarding grants supporting the pursuit of an academic career while raising children

Supporting Academic Mothers

A key factor contributing to the lack of women in positions of academic power is that the tenure clock coincides with the family clock. Trying to write a stellar grant is much more complicated when chasing after a teething toddler! And, despite continuing social change, it is often the mother who is mainly responsible for raising young children, even as she works a full-time job.

This is evidenced by the common perception that for a male having a family is a boost to his career, but for a female having a family is a bar to her career. As a consequence work/family balance is often cited as a reason young females leave academia.

So, at the Academic Mama Foundation, we recognize you: the intelligent, resourceful (exhausted) mothers struggling to have an academic career despite the out-dated Baby Penalty. We are you. We believe that supporting Academic Mamas is a crucial step to improving retention of female academics.

Thus our mission is to provide supportive scholarships to women endeavoring to be both successful academics and successful mamas. Because we believe that you can be both.


Many of the hurdles we face as academic mamas can be lowered with financial support. These grants aim to do just that. We have funded a variety of requests from individuals needing childcare support because they are writing/doing fieldwork/at a conference/etc. to groups who are offering support to mamas by having conference childcare available.

Emergency Relief Grants

Situations include but are not limited to: lack of funds for food, inability to afford child needs, medical emergencies, covid-19 related complications, inability to pay bills such as rent or car payments.

Basic Living Grants

This grant is intended to help Academic Mamas overcome daily challenges associated with pursing an academic career and raising children.

Application deadlines: August 15, December 15, April 15

Examples of grants include, but are not limited to:
– Arranging child care for work outside of normal business hours, i.e. evening meetings or classes, weekend grant writing, etc.
– Obtaining professional maternity clothes
-Reimbursing use of unpaid ‘vacation’ days to attend to a sick child
– Furnishing a lactation room
– Medical costs related to the health of your child or your motherhood

Event Based Grants

This grant is designed to supplement event resources, allowing Academic Mamas to attend critical work events / conferences. Application deadlines: August 15, December 15, April 15

Examples of potential requests include, but are not limited to:
– Providing on-site child-care at the event.
– Arranging additional child-care at home or off-site child care if none is provided at the event.
– Providing a lactation area at the event.
– Arranging for safe shipment of expressed milk home from the event.

*AMF does not discriminate based on race/ethnicity, citizenship, disability, gender or sexual identity, or economic status. For the purposes of our grants an academic mama is therefore defined as a self-identified mother, regardless of sex assigned at birth, or biological parenthood status, who is either a student or academic professional. Grants are given in order of need. Although we would love to fund everyone, that just isn’t possible.