Fostering Inclusive Communities in Engineering

The AIChE Foundation in partnership with AIChE’s Women In Chemical Engineering (WIC) and Management Division held the Fostering Inclusive Communities in Engineering workshop at the 2019 AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety in New Orleans.  Fostering Inclusive Communities was part of the leadership development track at the Spring Meeting, and is a core program of the recently launched All for Good: Engineering for Inclusion initiative.

On Monday, April 1, sixty attendees of the workshop learned the concept of unconscious bias, gained practical understanding of conscious inclusion and skills to leverage this knowledge to foster inclusion in the workplace. The opening of the workshop was led by Cynthia Murphy-Ortega, Manager, Chevron University Partnerships and Association Relationships.

Murphy-Ortega shared the benefits of fostering an inclusive workplace culture as it allows differences to flourish by equally valuing and engaging those differences.  She went on to explain that when individuals of diverse backgrounds, generations, race/ethnicity or gender collaborate, the results lead to innovation, productivity, and community. Followed by an overview of what unconscious bias is, why we all experience this in the workplace and how cultural competency skills can enhance work culture, was provided by Rosalie Chamberlain, Principal, Rosalie Chamberlain Consulting. 

Following the interactive learning workshop, an invited panel joined session participants in sharing their perspective and experience supporting inclusive workplaces. The panelists included Ana Davis, Head Health, Safety & Environment (HSE), in North America, Sygenta, James B. Porter, Jr., Principal Consultant, DuPont Safety Resources, Sandy Reyes, Manager EEO/AA/Diversity & Employee Relations & Policy & Procedures, State of Delaware and Patricia Rossman, Chief Diversity + Inclusion Officer, BASF in North America.

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