EUS Equity

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EUS Equity Committee
Eusequity.png
Established: 2014
Current Executives
Workshop Coordinator Kwesiga Kahigi
Communication Coordinator Lysandre Gagnon

The EUS Equity Committee is a committee under the President's portfolio. EUS Equity promotes diversity, inclusion, and equity in engineering at McGill University. The committee is chaired by the Equity Commissioner. The committee communicates mostly through the EUS Equity facebook page.

General

McGill’s EUS Equity Committee promotes diversity, inclusion and social equity in Engineering at McGill.

Social equity states that everyone should have access to the same resources and be able to succeed in our society. Contrarily to equality (is given the same resources) equity takes into consideration people’s identities and how that allows them to move through society. In summation: “Equality is giving everyone shoes, Equity is giving everyone shoes that fit.”

The committee creates discussions about how to make our university environment more inclusive. This group of students talks about issues regarding gender identity, race, sexual orientation, ability, mental health, universal design, teaching & learning and much more. EUS Equity conducts equity training for student leaders to incorporate equity values within our engineering culture. The committee also works with faculty in order to coordinate our efforts to increase diversity in engineering at McGill.

If you are looking to get involved, feel free to email the Equity Commissioner at equity@mcgilleus.ca or message the committee on the EUS Equity facebook page.

The EUS Equity policy can be found online.

QUESTIONS -Did we get an award?

Complaints

Equity complaints are brought up to the Equity Commissioner following the equity policy. The commissioner can provide safe, non-judgmental, and confidential support to the people involved in the complaint.

Events

Workshops

The objective of the workshop is to give the participants a different perspective and inform about equity and inclusivity. It is a meeting that engage a discussion or an activity between the participants and the workshop instructors. The norms of the workshops given by the equity Committee are respect, engagement, openness, inclusiveness and confidentiality. Scenarios are discussed, opinions are shared and list of resources are usually made accessible during the workshops. The Equity Committee wish to provide tangible tools for the audience to know how to make events accessible, use inclusive language, deal with students with specific needs, learn what resources and services are available and how to access them and solve real-life situations. The workshops are given to multiple councils of McGill University and during lectures like FACC 100 with an intro to safer space and diversity. There is also workshops that are given on workshop facilitation skills. These workshops give the facilitators tools to open and present complete and inclusive workshops.

Forums

Audience

All members of the McGill engineering community are invited to attend this forum. One of the forum's purpose is to bridge the gap between students, staff and professors, in terms of perceptions and conceptions of diversity and inclusivity.

Fall Forums

Hosted by the EUS Equity Committee, the Faculty of Engineering and the Mary Brown Fund, the Fall Forum aims to bring up topics of diversity in Engineering at McGill. This event is a great way to meet people interested in making Engineering at McGill more inclusive and connect with different groups on campus, faculty or industry leaders. The Forum allows attendees to discuss issues and work towards solutions to implement. It usually consists of a talk by a speaker and it is followed by discussion from a panel of leaders in the McGill community. Attendees are able to share their experiences, discuss with speakers common problems and potential mechanisms and strategies to deal with them, and form allyships across the spectrum of the engineering community based on improved understanding. During the event, refreshments and food are be provided and the admission is free.

Format

A keynote presentation followed by questions to the speaker, followed by a panel which is interrupted at some point to launch into roundtable discussions within the audience; at the end of these discussions, each table brings back the results of its discussions to the general audience and the panel, to relaunch the panel discussions.

Benefits

This forum, included in a series of events, will aim at building long-term support networks within the engineering community, through sharing of perspectives and experiences; developing a shared understanding of the challenges and benefits of creating a truly diverse and inclusive community in Engineering; maintaining an atmosphere of common engagement and commitment towards this community. It initiated numerous conversations with McGill Staff, Faculty members and students. Collaborations, experiences, issues and potential actions were discussed. The subjects of inclusivity, accessibility and microaggressions in EUS events, in the classroom and laboratories, admissions process, design competitions and teams, student projects, internships and transition to the workforce, classroom material, leadership positions in students groups, and diversity within the student and the professors body were covered as well. At the end, over 40 stakeholders were consulted.

Funding

Funded in part by the Mary Brown Fund. (add link)

Speaker

  • Dr. Karen Tonso, Associate Professor at Wayne State University (Michigan). Presented background information on the challenges that affect underrepresented and excluded groups in engineering

Panelists

  • Charmaine Lyn, Director of Medical Admission in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University.
  • Prof Tal Arbel, Associate Professor in the department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at McGill university.
  • Sara Houshmand, PhD student and recipient of the McGill University’s inaugural Award for Equity and Community Building.
  • Loréane Goma, Bachelor student in Mining Engineering at McGill in 3rd year

Speaker

  • Brie Code, Programmer in the video game industry, is part of the advisory committee for YES Montreal's Advancing Women in STEM through Mentorship Project. Presented ...

Panelists

  • Adeola Odusanya, Bachelor student in Chemical Engineering at McGill.
  • Prof Gaskin, Associate Professor in the department of Civil Engineering at McGill university.
  • Tynan Jarrett, Equity Education Advisor (LGBTTQ) at McGill University's SEDE office.

Forums on Universal Design

Description There is two types of Forum organized by the Equity Committee that includes Universal Design.

The first one was during the Winter semester. The Winter Forum talked about Accessibility and Universal Design in the Faculty of Engineering and aimed to create awareness and further discussions. Theses discussion introduced the concept and principles of Universally Designed technology, products and services. The forum focused on three topics of UD within industry: technology interface design, industrial product design, and physical space (architectural) design and planning.

The second type is the Forum on Universal Design for Learning Principles which took place in Fall 2015. It focused on creating learning environments which are accessible, inclusive and respect the diversity of the Engineering student body.


About UD and UDL

UDL is a sustainable, educational framework that guides the design of learning goals, materials, methods, and assessments as well as the policies surrounding these curricular elements with a diversity of learners in mind. Just as physical barriers can hinder students to access the classroom in our physical environment, curricular barriers can exist in the instructional environment that can hinder learning for students with diverse learning styles.
Universal Design (UD) as a concept originated in the field of architecture. UD as a concept is now widely applied in the field of education, curriculum design and the design of learning environments where it is known as Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Engineering design is fundamental to the engineering curriculum; therefore, there is a need to ensure that design curriculum -- especially in the design classroom or lab -- addresses these issues so that McGill’s graduating engineers will have the tools and knowledge to design products and projects with everyone’s needs in mind. The aim of introducing UD in classrooms (e.g. in a design project form) is to build awareness and skills related to universal design and to improve inclusivity and accessibility of the engineering design curriculum through resulting development of UD-ed ideas and products.

Format

The forum consists of a 1.5hr panel discussion with experts working at the forefronts of UD and accessibility and are implementing Universal Design into their work.

Benefits

This forum is the second in a series of events that will aim at building long-term support networks within the Engineering community, through sharing of perspectives and experiences; developing a shared understanding of the challenges and benefits of creating a truly inclusive and accessible community in Engineering; maintaining an atmosphere of common engagement and commitment towards this community.

Speaker

  • Isabelle Cardinal, Consultation Services Director at Société Logique. Presented ....
  • Michael Kokkolaras, Mechanical Engineering Professor at McGill university. Presented...
  • Jenna Laham, bachelor student in chemical engineering and member of the EUS Equity Committee. Presented....

Format

The forum takes place similarly to the structure that the OSD used at Senate. A facilitator gives a brief 10 minutes introduction about UDL and then the audience is broke into three groups. Each group goes to three different stations with different speakers. The speakers comes from different backgrounds and speak about their experience with UDL in engineering and why it’s especially valuable in our field.

EUS Equity Committee, EUS executives, OSD (Tanja Beck), TLS (Maria Orjuelde Laverde)

Funding

Equity budget (SSMU and EUS)

Speakers

  • Jonathan Verrett, PhD student in Chemical Engineering. Presented..
  • Prof. Jeff Gostick, Adjunct Professor in Chemical Enginerring at McGill University. Presented... McGill’s PMEAL lab Attended conference this summer by National Effective Teaching Institute (NETI-1)
  • Mikhail Smilovic, PhD student in Civil Engineering. Presented... Integrate sustainability into the curriculum opportunities to promote innovation within faculty

Outcomes and Future Objectives

  1. Opportunity for students and profs to meet outside the classroom, and meet people in the same program but with a different perspective and experience.
  2. Build alliances between students and faculty.
  3. Provide a support network for students.
  4. Provide a learning experience on what universal design is, and what it means in the design of STEM classrooms and curriculum
  5. Look to improve engineering curriculum and find ways to incorporate UDL into the classroom and lab

Structure of the Committee

The committee is based on commissioners and there are several other positions. These positions are the financial officer, the workshop coordinator, the forum coordinator, the communication director and the outreach coordinator. These positions can be filled by one or more people. Their respective duties are listed below.

Commissioners: ?

Financial officer: The financial officer is responsible for creating the committee’s budgets, keeping the Committee’s financial records up to date (filling out check requirements & updating budgets), and applying for funds both within EUS and externally.

Workshop coordinator: The workshop coordinator is responsible for booking, scheduling facilitators and all logistics regarding the EUS Equity Committee’s workshop series.

Forum coordinator: The forum coordinator is responsible for organizing the forums (fall & winter) with the help of the committee. They head the team organizing the forum.

Communications director: The communication director is responsible for sharing articles and information on the Facebook page, maintaining the wiki page up to date and the overall social media part of the committee.

Outreach coordinator: The outreach coordinator is responsible for planning events to recruit new members, collaborate with other equity organizations, etc. (Ex. Open forums, tabling)

Faculty of Engineering

The equity committee works in parallel with a lot of groups, organizations and committee within the McGill community. For example, to reach a wide audience, the workshops made by the Equity committee are given to many different organizations like : MAME, MEUS, CEUS, CHESS, ASA, QE, Blues Pub Managers, EUS execs, The Junior Council, POWE and others. Also, some Forums are brought together by more than one committee. The last forum was the work of EUS Equity Committee and SUS Equity Committee. Some stakeholders for the forums are from MESC, SEDE, CAPS or the OSD.

Electrical, Computer, Software


Stakeholders

  • McGill Staff and Services

The McGill Engineering Student Center (MESC): Jessica Wurster, Industry Liaison Associate The SEDE office: Sarah Malik and Tynan Jarrett. CAPS: Cindy Mancuso, Diversity Career Advisor. The OSD: Tanja Beck

  • Student Groups

The Engineering Undergraduate Society (EUS). Promoting Opportunities for Women in Engineering (POWE). National Society of Black Engineers McGill (NSBE). The McGill Robotics Team. The Peer Support Network. The Sustainability in Engineering At McGill group. The Computer Science Undergraduate Society. The IEEE McGill Chapter. Queer Engineering. Graduate Department Representatives.

  • Professors

Professor Joseph Kinsella and Dean Jim Nicell were also present.