Diversity in the Fulton Schools
Diversity and Inclusion Initiative
In spring 2020, we awarded our first round of DII@FSE funding for projects to increase diversity and inclusion in the Fulton Schools. Learn more about these projects below.
Diversity and Inclusion Initiative at the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering
In January 2019, the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering launched a new initiative focusing on diversity and inclusion — core values to the Fulton Schools and ASU, as exemplified in the university charter. This initiative is called DII@FSE.
Our DII@FSE task force has articulated a vision to follow strategies and practices that support environments where individuals feel included, valued and respected and where different kinds of people can succeed.
The DII@FSE has submitted a proposal to the American Society for Engineering Education’s (ASEE) Diversity Recognition Program. That proposal was awarded bronze status (the highest entry status a university can be awarded). Next steps for the initiative will be working together to realize the plan’s goals.
- Create and maintain a student body and workforce across the Fulton Schools that is diverse in multiple dimensions and inclusive for all.
- Empower faculty, staff, students and academic associates at the Fulton Schools to embrace the core values and practice of diversity, equity and inclusion.
- Be a global leader in diversity, equity and inclusion in engineering.
RAPID DII: Fostering Diversity and Inclusion in a Digital Environment
Purpose of opportunity: Provide funding to encourage projects that further the 10 strategic objectives identified in the DEI Plan in the context of distributed, digital, remote and virtual environments.
The Fostering Diversity and Inclusion in a Digital Environment program solicits projects that are using creative solutions to foster diversity, equity and inclusion across faculty, staff and students in the context of adapting to remote working and teaching. Projects that focus on connectivity, community building, resiliency, building relationships or mentoring are of interest.
Request for proposals
The deadline to submit a proposal for 2020 has passed.
Learn more about the DII@FSE plan
Excerpt from the 2020-2022 FSE Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Plan
The Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering (FSE) at Arizona State University (ASU) is committed to cultivating a culture of diversity, equity and inclusion through the implementation of programs and initiatives that support a collaborative and inclusive environment. With this plan for 2020-2022, FSE outlines a set of strategic goals, objectives, and initiatives that build on our current accomplishments and enable further advances in making the school an accessible and welcoming leader in engineering education.
1. DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION (DEI) FSE uses the following definitions to frame this plan:
- Diversity can be defined as membership that represents a range of identities and of identifying features within a group or organization (e.g., a university). Diversity has frequently been discussed with respect to factors such as race, ethnicity, gender, culture, sexual orientation, religion, age, physical abilities, and socioeconomic status. However, diversity can also be considered in terms of ideas and expertise (e.g., academic disciplines and methodologies). In engineering, underrepresented minorities (URMs) often include women, persons with disabilities and three racial and ethnic groups—Blacks, Hispanics, and American Indians or Alaska Natives (as defined by the National Science Foundation).
- Equity argues that persons should have equal or equivalent opportunities to succeed and thrive regardless of their background or “starting place”—differences in personal or social circumstances should not be allowed to create permanent obstacles. Thus, a more equitable organization is one that (pro)actively works to identify, remove, or mitigate such circumstances and obstacles. Notably, equity is often misunderstood to mean “treat everyone the same.” However, equity does not imply equal treatment, but instead demands providing and personalizing resources, without bias, such that everyone has opportunities for equal outcomes.
- Inclusion can be defined as the extent to which (a) members of an organization are invited to meaningfully participate in the mission, operation, and leadership of that organization, and (b) the contributions of those members are clearly acknowledged and valued. An organization is considered more inclusive when it not only comprises diverse members, but those members (and their ideas, needs, and perspectives) are welcomed and valued.
With this plan, FSE prioritizes DEI as key factors to our collective success in the 21st century.
Our vision is to embed inclusivity as a core tenet of FSE so that all faculty, staff, academic associates, and students achieve their full potential enabled by an environment that is diverse, equitable and inclusive. We aim to achieve global leadership in engineering education, aligned with an access mission, by recognizing diversity and inclusivity as a source of strength to our collective success.
3. OUR NEED
ASU represents students, faculty, and staff from all 50 states, three territories and over 135 countries, many of those enrolled in FSE. We are one of the largest colleges at ASU and one of the largest, most comprehensive engineering colleges in the United States. As of 2019, FSE is serving over 24,000 students. As such, we share the responsibility and vision to embed inclusivity as a core tenet of engineering education and practice, as well as the drive to incorporate it as a guiding principle in how FSE operates on a daily basis. All FSE students, staff, faculty, academic associates, and their colleagues should be supported in achieving their full potential, empowered by an environment that is diverse, inclusive, and equitable. Our responsibility further extends to global leadership. Our aim is to be a leader in inclusive, 21st century engineering education and practice, by recognizing and promoting diversity as a fundamental source of strength essential to our collective success.
4. GOALS & INITIATIVES
FSE prioritizes three overarching goals to frame this plan:
- Create and maintain a student body and workforce across FSE that is diverse in multiple dimensions and inclusive for all.
- Empower faculty, staff, students, and academic associates at FSE to embrace the core values and practice of diversity, equity and inclusion.
- Be a global leader in diversity, equity, and inclusion in engineering.
Building on our accomplishments to date, we will continue designing and implementing activities that target the 10 strategic objectives outlined below. Accomplishing these objectives has the potential for the most immediate and impactful change to our culture.
- Commit to balancing the diversity of students at all levels to reflect population statistics for female and URMs in Arizona
- Improve student recruitment, persistence and success of target populations
- Increase coordination with industry to increase career-readiness of targeted populations and connect committed employers with these populations
- Foster a culture of inclusion among graduate and undergraduate students and provide an encouraging and supportive environment for all students, faculty, and staff
- Ensure all undergraduate students acquire the knowledge, experience, and cultural competencies necessary to succeed in a multicultural, globally connected world and contribute to the Fulton culture of inclusion
- Balance the diversity of faculty and staff hires, at all levels, with those who are committed to thriving in a DEI environment
- Provide training to students, faculty, and staff to improve DEI awareness
- Establish metrics for faculty and staff evaluations that assess DEI contributions
- Recognize and honor participation and accomplishments related to DEI
- Establish procedures for periodic assessment of diversity and inclusivity and for adjustment of DEI initiatives
Implementation of the strategic objectives dovetail with current FSE- and ASU- efforts (see Narrative) and will target students, faculty, and staff. Specific objectives, activities, and metrics aligned with the goals are articulated below.
Student and faculty spotlights
When a group of Afghan refugees had no way to get to Arizona to restart their education, local aviation companies rallied to make a miracle flight possible
Meet the ASUio contestants who will compete for a share of more than $350,000 in prizes
Revisit some of the year’s most popular stories of how Fulton Schools students and faculty made lasting impacts throughout the year.
The Fulton Schools team developed a strain of mutant algae for the international synthetic biology competition
Fulton Schools computer science researchers and a political scientist search for paths to easing deep ideological divides that can threaten democracy
Industrial solvents that are among the most toxic contaminants could be cleaned up by Fulton Schools researchers’ new bioremediation technique
Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering students conduct use-inspired research to address real-world challenges in health, sustainability, data science and more
Pair of undergrads selected from 182 applications nationwide for their innovative note-taking tool, Jotted