The University of Utah John and Marcia Price College of Engineering was awarded the Bronze Level for the American Society of Engineering Education’s (ASEE) Diversity Recognition Program. The distinction was given to the college for making “significant, measurable progress in increasing diversity, inclusion, and degree attainment outcomes of their programs.”

According to ASEE, the Bronze Level recognition means the college is among the nation’s leaders in inclusivity and is committed to supporting underrepresented groups in engineering; analyzing the composition, policies, culture and climate related to underrepresented groups; implementing programs and initiatives that increase the recruiting of underrepresented students; and developing plans for continued improvement.

“We are excited about being recognized by ASEE for our efforts to build a more inclusive and equitable environment,” said University of Utah civil and environmental engineering associate professor Pedro Romero, who is the director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion for the John and Marcia Price College of Engineering. “This is not just an honor; it is a commitment to create a better experience for all students, faculty, and staff.”

The John and Marcia Price College of Engineering is dedicated to the inclusion of diverse ideas and recognizes that its strength comes from increasing diversity, inclusion, and degree attainment outcomes of its programs.

In an effort to focus on the enrollment of underrepresented students, the college has been reaching out to students in some of Utah’s Native American reservations and has also implemented its Discover Engineering recruiting program at Utah high schools to attract students of all groups to a career in engineering.

Increasing the enrollment of underrepresented students is only part of the work. The college is also dedicated to retaining those students once they’ve started their academic careers here. It has implemented culturally aware peer mentoring practices to help students in their studies.

The college’s faculty is also encouraged to advertise postdoctoral positions and recruit at conferences that emphasize attendance from various underrepresented groups such as the national conferences for the Society of Women Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and Out in Science Technology Engineering & Math.

The college is dedicated to supporting a diverse faculty and staff and organizing outreach events for supporting students’ clubs.

“The Bronze Level recognition is only the first step,” Romero said. “We are eager to take on the challenge and continue our efforts to attain higher recognition levels. As we learn, we will develop more activities in an effort to create a future where diversity is not just acknowledged but fully integrated into our everyday life.”