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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Recruiting, developing, and retaining a diverse and inclusive workforce is essential to our mission of enhancing innovation. Through a diversity of people, disciplines and ideas, we find the best solutions. 

NIST celebrates diversity and inclusion by supporting a variety of affinity groups, heritage events and cultural education opportunities.

Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

headshot of Sesha Moon
Credit: Department of Commerce

Sesha Joi Moon is NIST's first director of diversity, equity and inclusion. She is a recognized diversity, equity and inclusion expert whose work is rooted in the philosophical stance that “Diversity is delegating differences. Inclusion is celebrating differences. But equity is elevating differences.” Read her full bio.

affinity Groups

NIST STAFF voluntarily participate in a number of organizations dedicated to celebrating cultural backgrounds and other professional or personal affiliations. These groups include:

  • Association of NIST Asian-Pacific Americans (ANAPA). Contact anapa [at] (ANAPA).
  • Association of NIST Hispanic Americans (ANHA). Contact ANHA.
  • NIST & NOAA Pride Group. Contact pride [at] (Pride).
  • Women in STEM. Contact Women in STEM.
  • Veterans Group. Contact veterans_listserv [at] (Veterans Group).
  • Sigma Xi. Learn more.
  • Postdoctoral and Early-career Association of Researchers (PEAR). Contact pear [at] (PEAR).

  • Toastmasters Club. Learn more.

For the entire list of staff groups, please aimee.generoso-nguyen [at] (contact Aimee Generoso-Nguyen).

Professional Societies

NIST engages with a number of professional societies, including the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemist and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE), Advancing Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), Grace Hopper Celebration, Society of Black Physicists, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, Society of Women Engineers, National Society for Black Engineers and American Indian Science and Engineering Society. Our engagement takes a variety of forms, including attending and recruiting at conferences and various levels of staff staff participation with these organizations.

STUDENT and teacher opportunities

  • Summer High School Intern Program (SHIP): A NIST-wide summer intern program for students who will have finished their junior or senior year of high school by the start of the program and are interested in scientific research only.
  • Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF): Inspires undergraduate students to pursue careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) through a unique research experience that supports the NIST mission.
  • Professional Research Experience Program (PREP): Provides valuable laboratory experience and financial assistance to undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, and faculty.  The program is intended to assure continued growth and progress of a highly skilled science, technology, engineering, math (STEM) workforce in the United States.
  • Graduate Student Measurement Science and Engineering (GMSE) Fellowship Program: Provides doctoral-level graduate students with opportunities and financial assistance to obtain laboratory experience within the NIST laboratories in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines related to NIST measurement science and engineering research.
  • NRC Postdoctoral Research Associateships Program: Brings research scientists and engineers of unusual promise and ability to perform advanced research related to the NIST mission.
  • Pathways Program: Employs students and recent graduates of all ages and backgrounds 
  • Summer Institute for Middle School Science Teachers: Brings together middle school science teachers and NIST scientists and engineers for two weeks featuring hands-on activities, lectures, tours, and visits in NIST laboratories. The aims of the NIST Summer Institute Program are to increase teachers’ understanding of the subjects they teach, provide materials and resources to implement what they have learned at NIST in the classroom, and inspire their students to pursue careers in science related fields. 

Training and seminars

NIST's Steering Group for Equity in Career Advancement, the Civil Rights and Diversity Office and the Leadership Development program  offer a variety of training sessions, seminars and other opportunities for staff that foster diversity, inclusion and equity across NIST. 

NIST's EEO Policy

From NIST's EEO Policy: "NIST continually strives to establish and maintain a workforce that reflects America’s diverse populace and promotes an environment that respects and values individual differences. NIST recognizes that the ability to recruit, develop, and retain a highly skilled and diverse workforce is key to the Institute’s continued success." Read the full policy.

For more information about NIST's diversity, inclusion and equity efforts , visit the Civil Rights and Diversity Office.



Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Civil Rights and Diversity Office