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2014 Plenary Speakers
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2014 Forum Plenary Speakers

Opening Keynote
National Diversity Thought Leader Scott Page
Improving Collective Decision Making and Performance through Diversity

Monday, June 9 - 4:30 p.m. CDT

Scott Page's book, The Difference, shows that diverse groups of problem solvers outperform groups of the "best individuals". Diverse groups make more accurate predictions and solve problems more effectively than groups of "experts".  Page's work is directly applicable to corporations and engineering colleges aiming to increase diversity in engineering. The take-away: why diversity matters to ALL OF US.

Scott Page is the Director of the Center for the Study of Complex Systems at the University of Michigan where he serves as the Leonid Hurwicz Collegiate Professor of Complex Systems, Economics, and Political Science. Scott’s research areas include how diversity improves performance and decision making, and describes ‘diversity’ as NOT what we look like on the outside, rather what we look like within—the tools and abilities that make each of us unique. Related to diversity, Scott has authored two books:  The Difference: How the Power of Diversity Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools, and Societies and Diversity and Complexity.

Interactive Plenary Session
Borderlands of Education: Moving Towards a More Enlightened Engineering Culture

Tuesday, June 10, 2014 10:00 a.m. CDT

Michelle Madsen Camacho and Susan M. Lord will lead an INTERACTIVE session highlighting key structural problems in engineering education and suggesting creative solutions. This session will explore structures of inequity in engineering culture, illuminate and debunk common myths, and offer strategies to avoid these biases. Camacho and Lord will use a novel "interactive theatre" approach. Why sit in your seats and listen? You can participate by identifying "microaggressions", referencing  ideas from their book The Borderlands of Education: Latinas in Engineering.

Michelle Madsen Camacho is Professor and Chair in the Sociology Department at the University of San Diego.  She also serves as affiliated faculty to the Ethnic Studies and Women's and Gender Studies programs. , Her research investigates inequities in higher education, specifically as they relate to the low numbers of women and minorities in STEM.

Susan M. Lord is Professor and Chair of Electrical Engineering at the University of San Diego. Her research focuses on the study and promotion of diversity in engineering including student pathways, diverse populations including Latinos and military veterans, and cross-cultural studies with non U.S. students.

Plenary Session
Managing Culture, the Business Case for Change, and Improving Engagement in Change Initiatives

Tuesday, June 10, 2014 2:30-3:45 p.m. CDT

Jeff Barth, Program Manager, Catalyst, will present research on engaging men in gender initiatives, the benefits of inclusive leadership and key research findings from Rockwell Automation’s program, “Calling all White Men: Can Training Help Create Inclusive Workplaces?” Attendees will also be introduced to the program MARC (Men Advocating Real Change), launched in 2012 to empower members to engage in candid conversations about gender and its impact in the workplace.

Jeff Barth is the Program Manager of Men Advocating Real Change (MARC), an online learning community of professionals working together toward workplace equality. In this role he leads an internal team in the development of MARC communications agenda, market outreach, branding, product delivery, and community engagement.


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