The Role of Professional Societies in Retaining Women Engineers of Color
February 23, 2023
Our panelists explored the role that professional societies serve in supporting, maintaining, sustaining, and enhancing workplace retention efforts. Recent studies of women in engineering have highlighted real-world experiences of implicit bias and discrimination, including issues of retention and promotion in the workplace. These challenges are often multiplied for WOC in Engineering, who are typically held to stricter standards of competence than their counterparts.
Listen to the recording to hear from our fabulous panelists:
Linda Calvin is the Chief Impact Officer for Reboot Representation, an organization dedicated to doubling the number of Black, Latina and Native American (BLNA) women graduating with computing degrees by 2025. A 20-year veteran of the private IT sector, Linda collaborates with Reboot tech coalition partners to help create cultures that attract and retain BLNA women in tech. As a woman of color in tech, she is committed to diversity and being visible to youth and those who aspire to tech careers in the community.
Brooke Coley is Founding Executive Director of the Center for RARE JUSTICE, Assistant Professor in Engineering at the Polytechnic School of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering and Principal Investigator of the Shifting Perceptions, Attitudes and Cultures in Engineering (SPACE) Lab at Arizona State University. Brooke brings expertise in racial equity, justice, and sociotechnical innovation in the context of engineering. She recently received the 2021 Diversity and Inclusion Award from the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering for her commitment to creating and fostering a diverse and inclusive environment.
Rachel Yellowhair is a member of the Navajo Nation and has been involved with AISES for more than 25 years. Rachel is the West Region Site Services Manager at Raytheon, where she leads a team to support about 13,500 employees across several business locations in the west region of the United States. A highly motivated Digital Technology professional with over 20 years of experience in technical, project management and leadership areas, Rachel received AISES’ Blazing Flame Award in 2022.
Bianca McCartt currently serves as the Talent Pipeline Development Leader for the Engineering Division, where she is responsible for the strategy to engage with external engineering associations for GE Aviation. Bianca has a passion for the technical career growth of engineers, inclusion and mentoring, and a drive to implement process improvements. She has served as a member of the WCEC leadership team since 2021.
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Funded by the National Science Foundation Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science Program, Award HRD-2040634, the Women of Color in Engineering Collaborative (WCEC) is a partnership network of professional engineering associations, STEM-based companies, and higher education institutions dedicated to addressing systemic barriers that prohibit equitable work environments for women engineers of color. Through the WCEC, partner organizations will better leverage their resources to promote systemic change while working collectively to decrease the barriers that lead to the attrition of women engineers of color.