The session, based on and informed by the book, Changing the Face of Engineering: The African-American Experience (J. B. Slaughter, Y. Tao and W. Pearson, Jr., Editors. 2015), employs a “strengths-based, pathway model.” This approach requires a process of identifying sites of excellence and exploring strategies to build on their strengths. The approach seeks to understand “what works well,” “how does it work?” (“what is the supporting evidence?”) and “can it be scaled or replicated?” The authors identify facilitated interventions that create a more coordinated sequence of positive experiences. They argue that the knowledge gained from the programs, policies and practices at educational and employing institutions can lead to more successful interventions for African Americans at each critical transition point from education to the engineering workforce,
The session builds on the outcomes of a 2016 workshop by identifying mechanisms and strategies to increase African-Americans’ participation in engineering education and the profession. Overall, in both engineering and engineering technology, there are significant gender differences—in favor of males. African Americans’ slow and uneven progress in engineering impairs the country’s ability to compete successfully in the global marketplace. The future of U.S. leadership in technology and innovation will increasingly depend on a more diverse talent pool that includes African-Americans. One way to increase diversity among U.S.–born workers in the engineering workforce is to enhance the educational attainment and interest in technical fields among underrepresented minorities, such as African-Americans. Given the growing economic inequality between African-Americans and other demographic groups, acquiring high-quality technical skills provides an enormous opportunity to enhance economic and societal well-being. Historically, it was not uncommon to see approaches to understanding the underrepresentation of African-Americans in science and engineering from a deficit or pathology approach. That approach tended to locate the problem within the individual, the group, their families, communities and culture rather than institutional discrimination. Over time, that model has been largely rejected.
President and CEO of Charis Consulting Group LLC. She has over 25 years of experience working in secondary and post-secondary education, industry, and non-profits, and works closely with the U.S. Congress and government agencies to support STEM education. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Barabino is Berg Professor and Dean of the Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York (CCNY). She holds appointments in the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Chemical Engineering and the CUNY School of Medicine. She is a noted researcher in the areas of sickle cell disease, cellular and tissue engineering, and race/ethnicity and gender in science and engineering.
is Professor of Electrical Engineering-Systems and Vice Dean for Faculty Affairs in the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California. He conducts research in computer systems architecture, with particular expertise in interconnection networks and communication architectures for parallel processing systems, including multi-core and multiprocessor systems.
Reid is Executive Director of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). Recently, he was named a Top 100 Executives in America by Uptown Professional magazine.
Slaughter is Professor of Education and Engineering at the University of Southern California. He is a former director of the National Science Foundation, chancellor of the University of Maryland, College Park, and president of Occidental College. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and the recipient of the Academy’s Arthur M. Bueche Award. Dr. Slaughter was named to the American Society for Engineering Education Hall of Fame and was the recipient of the society’s Centennial Medal
Thompson is Director for External and Government Affairs, National Society of Black Engineers. She also serves as the Lead Project Manager for the 50K Coalition, a coalition among the nation’s leading diverse engineering societies.
Booth Womack is President and Executive Director of the National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program (NAMEPA) and the Director of the Minority Engineering Program at Purdue University
Yortsos is the Chester F. Dolley Professor of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, and holds the Zohrab A. Kaprielian Dean’s Chair in Engineering at the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. He is a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Engineering Deans Council (EDC) and serves as the chair of the Diversity Committee.
Banton is a PhD candidate in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) and Emory School of Medicine.
Leggon, an associate professor in the School of Public Policy at Georgia Institute of Technology, is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Sigma Xi. Her research focuses on underrepresented groups in the science and engineering workforces in the United States, South Africa, and New Zealand, which is the focus of her forthcoming book (Cheryl B. Leggon and Michael S. Gaines, co-editors) —STEM and Social Justice: Teaching and Learning in Diverse Settings, Springer Press
Willie Pearson is Professor of Sociology in the School of History and Sociology at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He specializes in the sociology of science and technology. He is author or co-author of ten books and monographs, and numerous articles.
Tao is assistant professor of sociology and director of the Gender Studies Center at the Stevens Institute of Technology. Her research addresses gender, race, the intersection of gender and race, and immigration in science and engineering education and workforce in the United States.