Asee peer logo

The Effect of a Deliberately Merged Program for Women and Minorities in Engineering

Download Paper |


2021 CoNECD


Virtual - 1pm to 5pm Eastern Time Each Day

Publication Date

January 24, 2021

Start Date

January 24, 2021

End Date

January 28, 2021

Conference Session

CoNECD Session : Day 2 Slot 6 Technical Session 3

Tagged Topics

Diversity and CoNECD Paper Submissions

Page Count




Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Laura Bottomley North Carolina State University

visit author page

Dr. Laura Bottomley, Teaching Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Elementary Education, is also the Director of Women in Engineering and The Engineering Place at NC State University. She has been working in the field of engineering education for over 30 years. She is dedicated to conveying the joint messages that engineering is a set of fields that can use all types of minds and every person needs to be literate in engineering and technology. She is an ASEE and IEEE Fellow and PAESMEM awardee.

visit author page

author page

Angelitha Daniel North Carolina State University

author page

Kimberly Pender North Carolina State University

Download Paper |


Approximately five years ago, the College of Engineering at a large, public institution merged its programs for women and for minorities in engineering. The result of this merger has been to leverage commonalities among the groups while enabling the partnership to address differences in ways that have led to changes in the climate of the College. One of the great advantages of this structural change to the way the College works toward diversity and inclusion is that intersectionality is naturally now a part of the design considerations for programming. Previously, women of color were put in a situation where they had to define which of their multiple identities they most identified with in order to decide which programs to attend. The minority engineering director was the mentor for students who aligned with their identity as a person of color most and the women in engineering director for those who identified more strongly as a woman first. This circumstance is limiting for both the program directors and for the students. Now, the WMEP works as a team with ALL students who identify in the space, including a number of majority male students. Inclusion is not just a word but a lived ideal. This paper will outline the programmatic efforts in the light of a new model used to completely change the traditional approaches of Women and Minority Engineering programming. Theories of self-efficacy, social capital, systemic change, belonging and identity creation were used to establish the suite of activities and drive the assessment process. Data on participation, impact and climate will be presented, together with the results of interviews of current and previous students.

Bottomley, L., & Daniel, A., & Pender, K. (2021, January), The Effect of a Deliberately Merged Program for Women and Minorities in Engineering Paper presented at 2021 CoNECD, Virtual - 1pm to 5pm Eastern Time Each Day . 10.18260/1-2--36128

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2021 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015