From comments such as, “I never wanted a Barbie before, but want this one,” regarding the new Sallie Ride astronaut Barbie,” — understood to be an example of progress in proving an astronaut role model for girls to — “I feel a bit isolated,” there is ample evidence that how to create a more inclusive profession and world are top of mind.
SWE is strengthening its affinity groups; opening meetings with a diversity and inclusion moment to expand awareness (much like the safety check that starts many engineering meetings, but the focus is D&I); and tracking our metrics through a dashboard. The metrics are important because we need to know where we are in order to do better. These aspects of SWE’s internal workings were discussion topics, particularly invitations to join the various affinity groups, which are engaged and energized.
Regarding the Fall 2019 issue, the executive director’s Closing Thoughts received a great deal of attention for her reflections on diversity and inclusion. Similarly, the Opening Thoughts, which discussed the issue theme of “Constructive Voices in Turbulent Times,” ranked high.
Echoing the theme of the cover story, the column stated, “In a whirling mass of confusion, engineers have the credibility, knowledge, and training to set priorities and policy in a clear direction toward solutions. What’s needed are clear, strong voices — perhaps yours.”