In Spring 2020, The College of Engineering inaugurated a college level DEI award. The purpose of this award is to recognize members of our community for contributions to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) of the engineering profession both within and outside of the university, especially those that go above and beyond their scholarly work. We acknowledge the contributions of two community members annually, one at the faculty/staff level and one at the undergraduate/graduate student or postdoc level.
College Deadline: Friday, March 31, 2023
Submission materials needed:
- One nominating letter of no more than two pages from within the university, briefly summarizing the merit of the nomination. Self nominations are allowed. In the nomination letter, please detail the nominee's:
- Commitment to promoting DE&I and building community at the undergraduate, graduate, and faculty levels within the college and/or a department;
- Contributions to DE&I at the broader campus level;
- Commitment to promoting DE&I and building community outside of the University;
- Description of the alignment of DE&I work within scope of their scholarly work versus as additional service or volunteer work.
- Up to two additional supporting letters of no more than one page each. Supporting letters may be from colleagues within and outside of the university.
Please submit nominations as a single PDF to engindiversity [at] umass [dot] edu.
All faculty, staff, and students in the College of Engineering community.
College evaluation process
A committee of students, faculty, and staff will review the nominations.
Jay Taneja is an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Taneja’s contributions to DEI are particularly notable for their breadth of impact. As one of his many DEI activities, Taneja advocated to college leadership for fellowships for deserving students from underrepresented minority backgrounds who were not selected to receive Spaulding-Smith Fellowships. His efforts resulted in the College of Engineering Diversity Fellowship Program.
Rebecca Louisthelmy '22, biomedical engineering, is a true leader and uses her many platforms at UMass and beyond to engage the community for positive change. She is the president of three campus groups: the UMass Black Student Union, the UMass Cultural Council, and the UMass STEM Ambassadors Program. Louisthelmy also serves as the Undergraduate Program Coordinator for the Student Bridges Agency, a non-profit focused on access and success of traditionally underrepresented minorities at UMass.
Sharkus is a doctoral candidate in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department studying environmental and water resources engineering. Sharkus is the founder of the non-profit organization Humans for the Opposition to Pollution and Emissions (H.O.P.E.), which creates community-based structures that meet the needs of disenfranchised community members by addressing environmental inequity through education, research, and project-based learning.
Peyton is a professor in the Chemical Engineering (ChE) Department. Peyton has contributed to DEI advancement is numerous ways, including leading efforts in federally funded training programs to increase underrepresented-minority representation in UMass graduate programs.
Sanket is a Chemical Engineering PhD candidate. Sanket’s work highlights issues faced by LGBTQ+ individuals in STEM and providing tips to be good allies.