The Ritchie School Hosts First DEI Affinity Fair
On Thursday, January 18, the Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science hosted the school’s first DEI Affinity fair.
The event hosted a total of ten organizations, all with connections to the diversity, equity, and inclusion values that the Ritchie School seeks to promote. For students and staff who were unable to attend, the affinity groups involved are always actively providing resources, community, and other opportunities to underrepresented populations at the University of Denver. Find all the information needed to get involved with the featured organizations below.
Collegiate Recovery Community (CRP)
CRP focuses on providing resources and community for members of DU coping with addiction. At DU, the organization offers one-on-one consultation as well as group sessions, where anonymity is always protected. External housing is offered to those who wish to engage in sober living. For more information, contact email@example.com or visit follow this link.
Queer University Employees (QUE)
Last summer, QUE gained entrance into Denver’s Pride Parade, a feat that Gabe Fisher hopes to accomplish again this year. He consistently sees new faces at QUE meetings, the next of which will host “Speedfriending,” where attendees will have the opportunity to get to know each other in the well-known rapid-fire fashion. For more information, one can contact Co-Chairs Gabe Fischer (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Elise Goss-Alexander (Elise.Goss-Alexander@du.edu).
Women’s Leadership Council
The Women’s Leadership Council is an organization including women in executive roles and within the Provost’s office and Deans’ Council at the university. The council is a strong advocate for women’s issues on campus as well as a place for mentorship and professional development for those involved. For more information, learn more here.
Society of Women Engineers (SWE)
SWE aims to break the patriarchal stigma present within engineering, equipping women with the confidence and community to thrive in the male-dominated profession. The organization’s members were enthusiastic to share about their yearly program, in which they connect with middle school girls, exposing them to engineering to cultivate their interest early in life. Each year, they have been impressed with the eagerness and intelligence of the young women involved. To learn more and participate in upcoming events by the Society of Women Engineers at DU, visit the group’s website on Crimson Connect.
Equity in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (E-STEM)
E-STEM is dedicated to ensuring the success of historically underrepresented groups on campus and off. The program is set up to provide resources and opportunities, like early move-in and Academic Excellence Workshops (AEWs). Members can also benefit from support during the summer, through workshops and activities designed to ease the transition from high school to college life; the networking opportunities offered connect students with alumni and industry professionals to support success after graduation. For more information or to get involved, visit E-STEM’s information page or email Anthea Johnson Rooen (Anthea.Johnson@du.edu).
Women in STEM
Women in STEM seeks to be an advocate for women taking part in the world of science, technology, engineering, and math more broadly, and a resource for those wishing to participate. By building community, acknowledged leadership Sabrina Efroymson and Ashley Muirhead, not only do Women in STEM benefit from a strong community of support by often holding study sessions during the quarter, but the network of alumni that are a part of the organization offers many opportunities for professional development. For more information or to get involved, visit their website.
American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES)
AISES serves an important role at the University of Denver, which is a predominantly white institution. In Fall 2023, DU reported a total of 65 undergraduate and graduate students of American Indian or Alaska Native descent, less than one percent of the total student body. AISES works to support an even smaller portion of these students who are active in STEM. Lauren Roberts, a second-year undergraduate and officer for AISES, said that a highlight of the organization’s programming was the nationwide conference in October, where members have the opportunity to travel and meet for three days with industry professionals who share their identity. The last conference was in Spokane, Washington. Students interested in learning more can find AISES on Crimson Connect.
Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE)
SHPE invites anyone interested in their mission to participate and engage with the organization, but they are primarily focused with the support and empowerment of the Hispanic community. They hope, like many of the affinity organizations invited to Ritchie’s DEI Affinity Fair, to be an outlet for Hispanic “innovators, scientists, mathematicians, and engineers,” by cultivating community and offering opportunities for professional development. Just like AISES, the organization gives members the chance to connect to nationwide chapters through regional and national conferences. The 50th anniversary of their national convention will be in Anaheim, California on October 30 to November 3, 2024. Down the road in 2028, the five-day event will be coming to Denver, CO. To get involved or for more information, visit their website.
National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)
The National Society of Black Engineers is also celebrating their 50th annual convention, which will be hosted in Atlanta, Georgia on March 20-24. Before that, there are many opportunities to get involved with NSBE on the University of Denver’s campus. Senator Alisha Pravasi also noted that the position of Treasurer was open to any student interested in taking on an active role in the DU chapter. Find NSBE on Crimson Connect.
Robert and Judi Newman Center
The Newman Center, DU’s resident performing arts venue, was at the Affinity Fair spreading the word about the Newman Center Presents Series, bringing acts like Small Island Big Song, a group of musicians from the Pacific Island and Indian Ocean nations, and Okareka: Mana Wahine, one of the leading indigenous dance companies of New Zealand. Students and faculty at the University can use the discount code “DUST” to receive tickets to world-class concerts for only $15. See the musicians coming to the Newman Center on the venue’s website.
There is more excitement coming down the pipeline for the Ritchie School, with the annual Engineers Week (E-Week) from February 19-23. Ritchie School students will have access to non-stop programming. Before that, students can look forward to DU’s Game Jam, hosted by the Game Development Society. Find notice for upcoming events at the Ritchie School by keeping up with the newsroom, following us on Instagram @ritchieschool, or keeping an eye out for flyers hanging around campus!