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Professor Chris Hernandez (BME)
"Decades of research has shown that having a diverse group of people working on a problem leads to more innovative solutions. Moreover, companies with gender, race and ethnic diversity tend to have better financial returns than their competitors. One of the duties of an engineering college is to educate and train talented engineers who will create the technologies of the future. The changing demographics in America suggest that if the nation is to remain number one in technology we must truly educate "any person" in engineering, The Ephraim Garcia Engineering Society recognizes that the availability of role models from similar backgrounds is an established method of enhancing the success of students from traditionally under-represented groups. The Society consists of faculty who are not only leaders in engineering research and education but are also proud to serve as role models for students. "
Professor Alan Zehnder (MAE)
"In my former position as Associate Dean for Diversity and Faculty Development at Cornell Engineering, as well as in my current position as a professor in Cornell's Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, I have witnessed firsthand the value of having a truly diverse faculty. Common sense and compelling research support the idea that having multiple voices in a group makes the group perform better. In addition to making the science we do here stronger, having a diverse faculty also allows us to serve our students better. If students see someone in the front of the room who looks like they do, it changes what the students think is possible. Our goal is to have the highest quality faculty we can, and that means recruiting talented, promising faculty from the biggest pool we can."
Professor Hakim Weatherspoon (CS)
"The impact of the Ephraim Garcia Engineering Society is
significant: It recognizes that we live in an ethnically rich and diverse world
and that we as a society benefit when the engineers and scientists that create
the inventions, innovations, and technologies we rely on reflect that
diversity. It is vital to support, embrace, and enhance diversity
everywhere along the pipeline. It starts with recruiting, retaining, and
graduating talented undergraduates from underrepresented groups. It includes
recruiting, retaining, and graduating promising graduate students from
underrepresented ethnicities and backgrounds. And it continues with
recruiting, hiring, and retaining talented faculty from these same groups. The
Ephraim Garcia Engineering Society has impacted me personally as an
underrepresented minority faculty member and helps motivate not just me, but
all of our students, our departments, and the entire college of engineering.
Ultimately, the Cornell University community and society at-large are the
beneficiaries of a more diverse engineering population."