The Engineering Division at NYU Abu Dhabi is committed to the values of inclusion, diversity, belonging, and equity (IDBE): inclusion, where all thoughts are heard and welcomed; diversity, where communities and activities are represented with a spectrum of ideas, backgrounds, and experiences; belonging, where community members strive to create an environment of warmth and positive experiences and are comfortable being themselves; and equity, where opportunities are provided for individuals to grow and broaden their horizons while accounting for past experiences.
A genuine source of creativity and innovation at our division comes from the diversity of its members’ demographics and educational backgrounds. Our students, researchers, administrators, instructors, and faculty come from all around the world. These best minds come together to advance technologies, support the global economy, and contribute to building a better future. We view our diversity as an invaluable asset, from which we leverage values of diversity to nurture mutual respect and promote collaborative innovation. Within engineering, we embrace the diversity of thought and foresee it as an absolute necessity for educating the next generation of engineers and global leaders.
Chair: Mohammad A. Qasaimeh, Associate Professor
The Early Engineers Research Forum (EERF) is a platform for early researchers within NYUAD Engineering to present their work, share ideas, get feedback on their work, and most importantly connect and collaborate with other researchers. The forum organizes a series of seminars every two weeks (Tuesdays @ 11AM) presented by fellow members of the NYUAD Engineering community including researchers, postdocs, and PhD students. The EERF is for and by engineering researchers, and the entire community is welcome to attend.
Inaugural "All Engineering Getting Together" - AEGT Initiative
The “All Engineering Getting Together” – AEGT is an annual agenda-free social gathering for all members of the Engineering community. The event is inclusive to all of our engineering undergraduate and graduate students, researchers, faculty, instructors and staff. The main goal of this gathering is to create a sense of belonging across our diverse Engineering community while ensuring individuals are granted access within this vibrant and emergent professional community. Participants will get the chance to meet new colleagues and friends over food and drinks.
2022 All Engineering Getting Together
The initiative of “Engineering WeBelong” at the NYUAD’s Engineering Division aims to bring the community of each engineering program together every semester. Each program’s community, including undergraduate students, graduate students, researchers, staff, instructors, and faculty, will be invited for a social gathering and agenda-free meeting that lasts 1-2 hours. The ultimate goal of this focused activity is to create a strong sense of belonging within each program’s community, by getting to know each other and participating in fun activities.
Engineering IDBE Seminar Series
We are devoted to educating our community - the leaders of tomorrow – on how IDBE values are integrated in our daily life, in terms of education, practices, and professional activities. We have monthly seminars, held virtually, for the entire academic year. Moreover, some special seminars are held in-person throughout the academic year. Below, you can explore the list of topics, distinguished speakers, and dates of upcoming seminars, as well as access to recordings of all of the previous seminars.
Race, it is commonly claimed, is a social construct of no biological significance. Yet, since the 1700s scientists have attempted to classify human populations into discrete groups. In this lecture, I will examine the history of race as a scientific concept and consider its abuses and misapplications. I will examine the cultural and historical context of scientific approaches to classifying humans into racial groups starting with Linnea us and Darwin. I will examine the abuses of race-based science manifest in the eugenics movement in the UK and USA and in Nazi Germany and explore how an academic discipline can become a justification for oppression and genocide. I will introduce the use of racial classifications in contemporary science and medicine through a historical lens. I will examine the utility of racial classification in identifying the genes that underlie human disease and understanding human history and variation in human behavior. My lecture will address the questions: "Can we differentiate between race-based science and racist science? Is race-based science of potential use? Or, in order to avoid racism must we avoid race in science?"
Professor David Gresham is a biologist interested in adaptive evolution, cell growth and quiescence, and gene expression regulation. David began as an Assistant Professor in the Center for Genomics and Systems Biology in the Department of Biology at NYU in 2009. From 2004 – 2009, David was a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of David Botstein at Princeton University. From 2001 – 2004 David was a Research Editor at Nature Genetics. In 2001, David completed a PhD in human genetics at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Australia under the mentorship of Luba Kalaydjieva. David obtained a BSc from McGill University in Montreal, Canada with a major in Biochemistry and a minor in Prehistoric Archaeology. At NYU, David teaches classes in human genetics, statistics, computational biology, and the history of scientific racism. David is the faculty director of bioinformatics and the co-director of the NIH-supported QBIST PhD training program. In 2022 David was appointed Vice Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Science.
In the realm of innovation and technology, the mission to effect positive change is an evolving and profound narrative. As an advocate of social entrepreneurship, my journey has been dedicated to harnessing the potential of technology for the betterment of society as an entrepreneur, investor and economic development leader. My belief is that when we build for outliers, or marginalized populations, we are inherently building technology that works for all.
Social entrepreneurship represents a paradigm shift in the innovation landscape, acknowledging that profit-driven motives are not the sole drivers of progress. Rather, it champions solutions that address pressing societal challenges, viewing profit as a means of making a sustainable impact.
My current work exemplifies this ethos by providing parents with indispensable tools for tracking their child’s development. The application creates a secure and supportive platform, catering to the unique challenges faced by families of children with special needs. It exemplifies how technology, when harnessed with empathy and purpose, can foster inclusivity and improve the lives of marginalized populations.
In my talk, we will delve into the intersection of technology and social entrepreneurship. We will explore the critical role of empathy as well as the audacity of entrepreneurs who dream of changing the world through innovation. We will uncover the potential of technology to serve as a powerful force for good, ultimately contributing to a more equitable and compassionate world. My hope is that every one of you feels inspired and think differently about technology’s role in shaping our collective future.
As the co-founder and CEO of a startup that is building tools to empowers parents of children with special needs, Dr. Ketaki Desai strongly believes in the power of technology for good. She served as the Vice President of Business Development at the Ontario Center of Innovation, managing an investment portfolio of over $200M across the province and creating a new lifesciences fund for early-stage companies. Before moving to Toronto, Ketaki lived in Pittsburgh where she was embedded in the innovation ecosystem for over a decade. She served as the Director of Strategy for a $1 billion life sciences investment fund at UPMC, taught Innovation and Commercialization as an Adjunct Professor at Chatham University, advised regional startups, accelerators, and non-profits, and led a regional incubator. In 2019, Ketaki was invited as a mentor and judge by the American Association for Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the U.S. Dept. of State at the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Bahrain. She has been awarded the Pittsburgh “Women of Influence” as well as the “Pittsburgh 40 Under 40”; awards. Ketaki has a Doctorate in Biomedical Sciences from Texas A&M University and a Master’s in Public Management from Carnegie Mellon University.
Speaker: Dr. Ketaki Desai, Tracer, Co-Founder & CEO Techstars Mentor
Speaker: Dr. Tia Brown McNair, is the Vice President in the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Student Success and Executive Director for the Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation (TRHT) Campus Centers at the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) in Washington, DC. She oversees both funded projects and AAC&U’s continuing programs on equity, inclusive excellence, high-impact practices, and student success. McNair directs AAC&U’s Summer Institutes on High-Impact Practices and Student Success, and TRHT Campus Centers and serves as the project director for several AAC&U initiatives, including the development of a TRHT-focused campus climate toolkit. She is the lead author of From Equity Talk to Equity Walk: Expanding Practitioner Knowledge for Racial Justice in Higher Education (January 2020) and Becoming a Student-Ready College: A New Culture of Leadership for Student Success (July 2016 and August 2022 Second edition).
Speaker: Prof. Sheri D. Sheppard, Richard W. Weiland Professor in the School of Engineering,
Stanford University, USA