Diversity Programs in Engineering

The Diversity Programs in Engineering (DPE) office at Cornell University has developed a vision of diversity appreciation reflective of the College of Engineering's strategic plan, which enables members from all backgrounds and cultures to thrive and succeed at Cornell. DPE provides an institution-wide integrative approach for providing innovative opportunities that enhance interaction and learning across groups. The DPE model is relatively unusual in that it vertically integrates all diversity-oriented activities, from high school outreach to faculty recruiting and mentoring under a single organizational structure. Measures of the success stemming from this model include a 59% increase in the enrollment of underrepresented minority (URM) undergraduate students between 2006 and 2010, a 25% increase in the number of women in the undergraduate enrolling class, completion rates for both groups well above national averages, and a Ph.D. retention and completion rate of 88% for URM students in the Sloan and Colman graduate programs. DPE has received national recognition from the Society of Women Engineers, the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and the National Society of Black Engineers.