When Whitney Gaskins, Ph.D., submitted her dissertation, it was the first of its kind in the University of Cincinnati’s College of Engineering and Applied Science. Titled “Changing the Learning Environment in the College of Engineering and Applied Science: The Impact of Educational Training on Future Faculty and Student-Centered Pedagogy on Undergraduate Students,” the work has been recognized by the National Technical Association for its novel approach to studying students, particularly underrepresented minorities and women.
Dr. Gaskins is assistant dean of inclusive excellence and community engagement at the University of Cincinnati. She is also an assistant professor in the university’s engineering education department in the College of Engineering and Applied Science, the only African-American female currently teaching in the College. She holds a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, a master’s in quantitative analysis, and a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering/engineering education. Dr. Gaskins teaches foundational engineering courses, works with the Emerging Ethnic Engineers Program, and teaches calculus 1 during the university’s summer bridge program.
A community activist, in 2009 Dr. Gaskins founded The Gaskins Foundation, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to educate and empower underrecognized and underrepresented youth. Her foundation recently launched the Cincinnati STEMulates year-round K-12 program, a free program designed to introduce more students to math and science. In 2016-2017, the foundation served more than 750 students. For her efforts, in 2017 Dr. Gaskins was named the K-12 Champion by the National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates.
Dr. Gaskins has served on the national executive board of the National Society of Black Engineers. She is also a member of the Society of Women Engineers, the Women’s Alliance, the National Technical Association, and the Biomedical Engineering Association, among others. She is deaconess at New Friendship Baptist Church.
Who Are the Women Engineers We Should Know?
Quite often, those who are behind the scenes and out of the limelight make real change in the workplace and in our communities. It is our intention to recognize such women and make their efforts better known in our SWE Magazine series “Women Engineers You Should Know.”
Casting a wide net, SWE Magazine staff and editorial board members seek contemporary women whose lives have embodied the Society’s mission to: “Stimulate women to achieve full potential in careers as engineers and leaders, expand the image of the engineering profession as a positive force for improving the quality of life, and demonstrate the value of diversity.”
Through a variety of means, including fielding suggestions and conducting archival research, we will examine the stories of many women who have made a difference in these critical areas. Determining a final list is a daunting challenge, and our selections are in no way meant to be definitive. While some names you may recognize, many are not recognizable to most people. From a variety of perspectives, in different environments and moments in time, these women represent “ordinary” when doing “extraordinary” things. In saluting them, we are saluting all the women, known and unknown, past and present, who have advanced our mission.
Nominate women engineers to know for our next article. The deadline for nominations is Friday, December 28, 2018. Submit nominations here.
With each submission, please include the following.
- Nominee info: name, why her, links supporting your nomination, areas of expertise, where is she located
- Nominator info: name, email, how you know the nominee
Thanks for your help, and look for the Spring 2019 issue of SWE Magazine.