The goals of this group will promote many areas of student involvement. First of all, the formation of this group itself requires the involvement of many students. The creation of the executive committee will provide several students with more involved leadership positions. The entire CPES student population will be invited to join WiSE. Both men and women, regardless of their discipline will be welcome to attend various lecture series and sessions. The students who participate in WiSE activities will also be doing a service to the community through various outreach and volunteering opportunities such as Engineers in the Classroom. This would provide an opportunity for students to attend a local grade five class and present an engineering activity. This project is initiated through the Professional Engineers of Ontario. The presence of a female in this role would be very positive to the young people in the class. Future WiSE organized mentoring will provide opportunities for all STEM disciplines to be involved. Furthermore, this group plans to take on responsibility for organizing events for the December 6th vigil. In the past, there has not been a great deal of structure to the organization of a service and thus this group will be able to ensure continuity. The group will enable several students to develop leadership skills as a result of outreach, being active as a mentor and being a member of an executive with various responsibilities. Members of the executive will contact speakers providing networking experience for the students. Executive and other members will be given the opportunity to attend conferences subsidized by the group. The creation of this group will also improve awareness and confidence in young women. It will give them more assets for when they enter the workforce. The lecture series will provide information while mentoring will give practical skills.
The main short-term goal of this group is to firmly establish the chapter itself. It is envisioned that the group will bring together a variety of people, men as well as women, from a broad range of backgrounds (professors, alumni, undergraduates, graduates, and members of the community at large). This will involve establishing an executive group and seeking accredited club status with CPES or CSA.
One of the main focuses of the group will be to bring to light issues specific to women in the sciences and engineering as well as issues relevant to women in general, as to better prepare female students for future challenges. It will also serve to educate others outside of the primary focal group. A long-term goal of the group is to produce graduates from the STEM disciplines at the University of Guelph that are prepared for gender issues during their careers. This will be accomplished by building skills to overcome future obstacles. Another long-term goal is to have a positive impact on the community through volunteering and mentoring activities. The group has established a long-term goal to adopt the December 6th Memorial. Plans include a service at the cactus garden in the School of Engineering each year and renovations to the current memorial.
One approach for obtaining WiSE's goals will be to provide lecture series and presentations featuring speakers from various backgrounds on a variety of subjects. Ideally, these presentations will cover topics that are beneficial to many different interests in order to broaden the core group both in discipline and experience.
WiSE also intends to implement a mentor program with surrounding high schools and elementary schools. The goals will be to encourage students, male and female, to pursue careers and individual interests, as well as to illustrate the various careers and interest areas associated with the fields of science and technology. To begin, participation in the Engineer in the Classroom through the Professional Engineers of Ontario will provide experience while a more involved mentoring program is developed. Another program related to the entire community will be participating in volunteer activities such as helping out at women shelters and the local food bank. These opportunities will sensitize students to the difficulties experienced by others.
Through these various approaches, WiSE will educate the community outside of the university about the various roles women are currently filling in the workplace as well as the many challenges faced by females in a STEM career. By further educating the community in and outside of the university, WiSE will better prepare female students and people already within the work force for the issues relevant to women in science and technology related roles.