IDEAL Featured Session: A Conversation on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion | AIChE

This year's Meeting theme deals with the crucial partnership between academia and industry for the 21st century.  In keeping with this theme, and in line with AIChE's recent adoption of the IDEAL Statement, this session will bring together critical perspectives from the Chemical Engineering community to address the importance of  early adoption of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) efforts within an educational setting so that these principles can take root and last in the professional setting.

The session will feature remarks from Karl W. Reid, Ed.D., CDP, Senior Vice Provost, Chief Inclusion Officer and Professor of Practice, Graduate School of Education, Northeastern University. Following his lecture, the session will open up for a dynamic panel discussion with representatives from four of AIChE's communities, followed by a networking reception: 

  • Melissa Postlewaite, Disabilities OutReach & Inclusion Community (DORIC)
  • Tony Butterfield, LGBTQ+ and Allies Community
  • Karen Romero, Minority Affairs Committee (MAC)
  • Caryn Heldt, Women in Chemical Engineering (WIC) Community

From Pledges to Practice: Turning Commitments into Action to Create More Inclusive Institutions

Karl W. Reid, Northeastern University

The United States and the world are in the midst of a watershed moment of racial reckoning. In the wake of global protests for racial justice, billions have been pledged, and thousands of companies, universities, and associations have made commitments to dismantle systemic racism and work toward social justice. There’s a reason. For institutions to thrive, they must foster an inclusive climate, one in which every stakeholder feels that they can bring their whole selves into the classroom, laboratory and the workplace. And yet, fostering true systems change has proven elusive.

Engineers are astute at tackling complex problems. Who, then, are better equipped to grapple with the complexity of increasing diversity, and fostering equity and inclusion (DEI) in higher education, industry and other domains at scale? 

This talk synthesizes the latest research on diversity into a practical value proposition, through the lens of an engineer. It makes the case for why diversity and inclusion matter, and offers a systems approach to creating more equitable and inclusive workplaces and campuses.