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TTU Student Initiative Promoting Engineering Diversity

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
TTU Student Initiative Promoting Engineering Diversity

A group of Tennessee Tech students are doing their part to increase diversity in the engineering world.

Students of three engineering organizations, the National Society of Black Engineers, the Society of Women Engineers and Women in Cybersecurity, are promoting the profession to high schools across the state. President of the Society of Women Engineers Alexis Harvey is one of five Tech students leading the cause.

“Our goal is to not be the minority anymore,” Harvey said. “And so of course ideally, you don’t have to be a minority anymore, because there is so much. We’re all together, and we’re in unity. In order to do that, we want more people. We want more people to know what their options are. We don’t want anyone to feel because they are a woman or a person of color that you can’t be an engineer.”

Harvey said the group has spoken to schools from Shelby County to Knox County. Harvey said the message has been well received among students.

“It went pretty well,” Harvey said. “We went to Shelby County, Davidson County, Knox County, and we just really talked to those kids about what is to be an engineer in general. Because, not everybody has that exposure depending on what county and what school you are at. And then, we talked about diversity and why that is important, and of course, we talked about Tennessee Tech, as well.”

In fact, Tech’s College of Engineering wants to create a long term partnership with the initiative to continue annual visits.

“So, we’re going to actually have a few of us from each group hopefully annually,” Harvey said. “Once we graduate, the people who fill our roles will do it, as well. Actually try and go visit the schools in-person once COVID restrictions are lifted and try to hit every single county in the state of Tennessee.”

Harvey said the engineering group is visiting two more schools to cap off the successful semester.

“We have scheduled visits with schools all the way through the end of April, and then, taking a break over the summer, because some of us are graduating and things like that,” Harvey said. “But for this semester, we still have two planned trips to high schools in Chattanooga.”

Harvey said she wants all students to know that nothing should keep you back from following your dreams.


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