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Highlighting Diversity and Inclusion

In order to better serve the Synberc community in learning about diversity and inclusion in STEM, we organize activities to highlight research and workshops in this area. By exposing our members to the latest data and developments in this area, each individual can consider their own biases and actions. We hope to create change that will lead to a climate of inclusivity.

With these efforts, we have noticed a peaked interest in diversity and inclusion research and a want to practice actionable solutions. We encourage other STEM centers and departments to consider similar initiatives. Perhaps replace one scientific talk in a seminar series with a diversity and inclusion presentation. Or consider a training session on unconscious bias for a faculty hiring committee or a graduate student admissions committee. Each lab and company sets its own culture, why not start with an environment that is inclusive and accessible to all.

Retreat speakers

Nancy Hopkins, the only woman professor in her department at MIT in 1973, has been an ardent supporter of gender equity in STEM. In 1995, she was appointed as the first Chair of the Committee on Women Faculty in the School of Science at MIT, which resulted in the 1999 report that exposed the status of women faculty at MIT. In 2000, she was appointed as the first Co-Chair of the Council on Faculty Diversity at MIT. Learn more about Professor Hopkin's research here.

Victoria Plaut presented about implicit bias and how organizations like Synberc can address the challenges and opportunities of working, living, and learning in diverse environments. Her recent projects on diversity include studies related to diversity climate, diversity resistance, perceptions of inclusion, colorblind vs. multicultural models of diversity, models of deafness and disability, and gender diversity and recruitment, among others. Learn more about Professor Plaut's research here.