UC advocates for diversity and inclusion in engineering
Assistant dean to give keynote at national women in engineering summit
Faculty and staff from the University of Cincinnati are leading the way in inclusion in engineering, serving as facilitators, subject matter experts, speakers, and more through the Women in Engineering ProActive Network, or WEPAN.
Leaders in the College of Engineering and Applied Science lend their time and talents in developing innovative programming and promoting best practices for supporting women in engineering nationwide, as well as working to bring a focus on inclusion into the core competencies of the college.
"It is essential to engage with organizations such as WEPAN,” said Paula Lampley, director of Women in Engineering in the college’s Office of Inclusive Excellence and Community Engagement. “WEPAN's focus of advancing cultures of inclusion and diversity in engineering higher education directly aligns with our office's mission.”
The network's mission is to advance cultures of inclusion and diversity in engineering education and professions. It's recognized as the leading champion in North America for leveraging research and best practices to propel the inclusion of women in the field of engineering.
Lampley currently serves as the planning co-chair for the Women in Engineering Program Day and as a member of the Women of Color Summit planning committee, both new events for the organization this year. Several of Lampley’s CEAS colleagues are also involved with the network and its associated events.
Whitney Gaskins, assistant dean of inclusive excellence and community engagement for the college, will give one of the keynote addresses at the first-ever WEPAN Virtual Women of Color Summit on Nov. 9.
The summit, titled, “Leveraging, Learning, and Leading,” offers workshops that provide a platform for women of color in the STEM fields and their allies to network, engage in authentic discussions, and share best practices.
“WEPAN has made such a mark on my career and those of so many of my colleagues. I am appreciative of the opportunity to reciprocate that support to help other women in engineering,” said Gaskins.
The Women in Engineering Virtual Program Days in early October, titled “Returning to Our Roots,” were sponsored by the National Science Foundation's Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships.
WEPAN’s Women in Engineering Program Day events are designed to convene practitioners and other stakeholders in the advancement of women in engineering to network, share resources, and discuss best practices for supporting women in engineering at higher education institutions.
During the two-day event, Lampley served on a panel on Women in Engineering, sharing her personal and career journey.
Batsheva Guy, program director of strategic initiatives for UC, led a workshop titled, "Using Participatory Methods to Foster Inclusion for Women in Engineering,” based on her ongoing research with UC associate professor Brittany Arthur, and others.
“Despite WEPAN being a virtual conference, I was thrilled by the excitement and engagement of participants during my session. I was able to share my experience with implementing participatory research methods with women in engineering, and as a group we worked together to co-create a participatory session to address issues that women in engineering face,” said Guy.
P.K. Imbrie, head of UC's Department of Engineering Education, serves on the WEPAN Board of Directors. He says one of the most important things he’s reminded of in work with WEPAN and other similar organizations is the power of trying to understand other people’s perspectives.
“It's the relationships, and listening to all the people like Dr. Gaskins across the country talk about student concerns and how they interact with students and how the work that they do makes a difference,” Imbrie said.
Opening doors to engineering
The Office of Inclusive Excellence and Community Engagement assists students and alumni with exploring career paths and professional and personal development, cultivating collaboration, mentorship and networking opportunities across the UC community and beyond.
Learn more about UC's initiatives for women in engineering and applied science.
Image featured at top: Two doors. Photo/Canva Edu.