WiE Newsletter - April 2022 - ISSUE 29
Dr. Shelly Heller
Dr. Shelly Heller

Front and Center 

News from the Director

The newsletter is a bit late, but I have an excuse. No, the dog didn’t eat my homework. We have been celebrating WiE’s 3rd anniversary and I wanted to wait a bit so I could include the most recent news.
The news is our celebrations reached many audiences and were consistent with our mission of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging. ‘WiE’ seek to empower GW faculty, staff, students and alumni to become the best engineers they can be. ‘WiE’ works to build confidence and knowledge about technology, expand leadership and tech skills, and fully leverage                                                                        technology in support of academic and professional                                                                         excellence. 

With best wishes for a safe, healthy and inspiring Spring!
Dr. Shelly Heller
WiE Center Director

    WiE is 3! A Conversation with Harvey Mudd College President, Dr. Maria Klawe-April 6th 5-7pm

    SEAS the Opportunity: Alumni Panel & Speed Networking Event for Graduate Students 

    Alumni, from left to right-Kim Kessler (MBA, University of Maryland, BS Civil Engineering, GWU), Murial Dumit (MS Civil and Environmental Engineering, GWU, BS Civil Engineering, GWU) and Tara Olsen (BS Mechanical Engineering, GWU) led the panel for our SEAS the Opportunity: Alumni Panel & Speed Networking for Graduate Students. They addressed how networking had impacted both their professional and personal lives. Kim noted that since she kept in touch with those she met along the way, she “never searched for a job” without a current connection to the job she wanted. Elevator speeches, they said, were important though they hadn’t specifically memorized one, but did have the key ideas at the ready. Noting that networking can be challenging, the panel suggested being yourself and being authentic to who you are when you are networking, to follow up with contacts (don't lose touch for years and only reach out when you're looking for a job) and to make keeping in touch a priority. 

    Since it takes practice, after the panel the group adjourned to try their hand at networking. Modeled after speed dating, pairs of individuals faced each other and tried this for five minutes before changing partners. If the sound level in the room was an indication, this event scored very high.
    This is a link to the panel discussion: https://vimeo.com/699037863

    WiE is 3! A Conversation with Harvey Mudd College President, Dr. Maria Klawe 

    WiE is 3! A Conversation with Dr. Maria Klawe Event
    WiE is 3! A Conversation with Dr. Maria Klawe Event

    WiE is 3! A Conversation with Harvey Mudd College President, Dr. Maria Klawe 

    The central celebration for WiE is 3! was A Conversation with Harvey Mudd College President, Dr. Maria Klawe. Led by current SEAS students, Kate Jaroszynski (BS BioMedical Engineering) and Anthony Hennig (PhD, Systems Engineering), President Klawe, in her usual direct and forthright manner, engaged in discussions ranging from her career trajectory to the role of male allies in promoting gender diversity in engineering to building a caring celebratory community.
    After the conversation with Dr. Klawe, we adjored for cupcake reception. 
    Link to the WiE Celebration can be found at https://vimeo.com/698747604

    WiE is 3! The SEAS Center for Women in Engineering 2019-2022 in review...

    In celebrating our 3 years, we took the opportunity to review our program, identify our accomplishments, seek to understand trends in our impact and try to understand where we might improve our efforts. The data in the chart below notes we held the greater percentage of online events during Covid, no surprise. What is exciting is the breadth of events from faculty and student webinars on various topics to career focused presentations to panels. Among other data we collected, we noted that the unique visits to our website have increased steadily from 1100 in 2019 to over 3900. Board discussions of this data suggested we’ve done well in the face of Covid challenges. We now are poised to revitalize our mentoring program, address widening our tent with the support of male allies, and establish a student advisory board to focus on programming. We have our work cut out for us and will be working this summer to plan the 2022-2023 academic year activities.
    As ever, if you have ideas for programming or are interested in participating, let us know at scwie@gwu.edu

    image of newspaper

    What WiE Are Reading

    I am a member of the systers listserv and there has been a very interesting discussion addressing the question “What would you do if a (woman) job applicant asked for too little money?” This discussion is not a hypothetical as noted in a Yahoo news article. Here is a sample of the replies:
          “I don’t see why you can’t tip off the applicant - especially a marginalized applicant likely with
    massive impostor syndrome - to the range (nevermind that this becomes law in WA state and other places soon.) Let them negotiate down from there or better, stick up for them all the way to the top end because they’re likel bringing in far more value than a 20k/year difference while that may be a huge difference to them personally - they’re not gonna forget that you did that for them.”
                “It might make sense to define what we mean by “fairly.” Because 70k-100k was a fair range for the position. At issue is whether the candidate ought to be paid at the top of the range. Not EVERYONE deserves the 100k, after all… though I dare say that most people would ask for the top number and (presumably) negotiate down.

    What would you say? Send us your thoughts to scwie@gwu.edu

    One issue that often comes up, especially from younger women, is that the playing field is not so bad, that the big concerns have been addressed. While that often makes the women who have been in STEM for years (and years!) feel that ‘they don’t get it’, a recent report in Higher Ed Dive indicates that that the work IS NOT DONE as “some 28% of women working for colleges believe they have been passed over for a promotion because of their gender, according to new survey data from Gallup.” Hispanic and Asian women “were more likely to say they missed an opportunity for career advancement due to gender than others, with 33% and 30% saying they thought they’d been passed over, respectively.” A lower share “of women also reported they were being paid fairly for their work than men.” Only 35% of women “agreed or strongly agreed they were paid fairly, versus 47% of men.”

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