On May 2nd, 45 women gathered for a national workshop focused on advancing women in science and engineering (WISE). The workshop, held at the University of Alberta, invited speakers from across Canada to talk about overcoming challenges and tips for achieving successful career development and lifestyle balance. Fostering equity, diversity and inclusivity was also a major theme of the workshop. In addition to inspiring speakers, networking and speed mentoring sessions allowed attendees time to seek advice from and share experiences with one another.
Dr. Ania Ulrich and Dr. Amy Kim from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering organized the workshop upon seeing an opportunity to bring together professionals who could share insight on their struggles and triumphs as women in STEM fields. The Faculty of Engineering, NSERC and the Centre for Smart Transportation provided support to ensure the workshop was a success.
With women making up only 11% and 15% of U of A faculty positions in engineering and science respectively, opportunities for networking and building connections with female peers in STEM fields provide important support for female peers who may not have other women working in their discipline.
As a step in the direction of increasing equity, diversity and inclusivity in the workplace, Dr. Ulrich will be taking on the role of associate dean of outreach for the Faculty of Engineering in July.