- Airbus Group and The Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC) announce recipient of the 3rd Diversity Award
- Reaffirm shared commitment to building more diverse global engineering workforce
Airbus Group and the Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC) have named Professor Fadi Aloul of the American University of Sharjah (AUS) in the United Arab Emirates recipient of the 2015 Award for Diversity in Engineering Education. The award was presented by Charles Champion, Executive Vice President Airbus Engineering and Patron of the Diversity Award at the GEDC annual meeting in Adelaide, Australia.
In addition to the global visibility which the award offers, Professor Aloul receives a significant financial contribution to support his work.
“We are convinced at Airbus Group that diversity fosters innovation, performance and engagement,” said Thierry Baril, Chief Human Resources Officer of Airbus Group. “We need talented and diverse engineers to remain at the forefront of our innovative and fascinating industry. That’s why Airbus Group is working hand in hand with the education sector to build and secure a diverse talent pipeline.”
Professor Aloul was selected as the Award recipient for his key role in developing a common first-year programme at the AUS, which introduces undergraduate students to the engineering profession, stimulating their critical thinking, creativity and innovation. To date, over 10,000 students from 92 nationalities have taken part, with an average of 35 percent female students.
Two other finalists, who presented their projects to a distinguished international jury included Professor Martin Baumann from Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule (RWTH) Aachen, Germany and Associate Vice Provost Renetta Tull of the University of Maryland in Baltimore County, U.S.A.
“This year, the Jury had the opportunity to assess three outstanding candidates, whose work focuses on very different areas. At Airbus Group, we are committed to continuously building a diverse and inclusive workforce, and to encouraging all forms of diversity, as so well illustrated by this year’s Award recipient,” said Charles Champion.
The Award Jury also included John Beynon, Chair of the GEDC and Dean of Engineering at the University of Adelaide; Karen Simmons, Service Quality Manager, Human Resources & Development, Qantas Engineering, Qantas Airways Limited; Alejandro Jadresic, Dean, Faculty of Engineering and Sciences, University Adolfo Ibañez, Chile; and Sushma S. Kulkarni, Director, Rajarambapu Institute of Technology, India.
“Engineering is one of the most exciting, challenging and varied careers, where teamwork is hugely important,” said John Beynon of the GEDC. “This year, we saw that all our finalists have the support of equally committed colleagues and team members. The message is that together we can, and will, make a difference.”
Airbus Group and the GEDC are united in their belief that engineers will play a vital part in creating the sustainable solutions to critical issues facing society in the future. Bringing together industry and academia in partnership, the Award was launched in 2012, reflecting Airbus Group and the GEDC’s mutual ambition to increase the numbers of engineers from all backgrounds and profiles entering the engineering workforce.
The Award recognises the grassroots initiatives and the people behind them which enable students from all backgrounds and profiles to study and succeed in the field of engineering, as students and also when they join the workforce. The Jury’s criteria for the Award focused on the demonstrable success of each initiative, the transferability of the ideas and the potential to inspire others globally.
At the gala ceremony for the Award in Adelaide, an additional honour was presented to Gary May from the Georgia Institute of Technology in the U.S. He received an exceptional Jury’s Recognition for Outstanding Achievement, recognising his career-long efforts and achievements in increasing diversity in engineering.
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About Airbus Group
Airbus Group is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2014, the Group – comprising Airbus, Airbus Defence and Space and Airbus Helicopters – generated revenues of € 60.7 billion and employed a workforce of around 138,600.
NOTES TO EDITORS
Martin Baumann, Assistant Professor, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany Professor Baumann has been selected for his work on enabling students with disabilities and diverse learners to be assessed on an equal basis with all students. He has developed a range of tools to assist students and support teachers, and also works directly with students concerned to create the interfaces and devices required to meet their needs. More than 30,000 students have been able to take adapted e-assessments since 2004.
Renetta Tull, Associate Vice Provost for Graduate Student Development & Postdoctoral Affairs, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, U.S.
Renetta Tull leads the Promise Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate to train undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and early-career faculty. This programme includes a global STEM diversity and inclusion initiative, and aims to build global engineering workforce capacity through focused attention on increasing the numbers of future engineering faculty from underrepresented groups and has resulted in a significantly increased pipeline of diverse alumni and engineering programme participants.
Following the model of the ASEE Engineering Deans Council (EDC), the Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC) was created on 9 May 2008 in Paris, under the umbrella of the International Federation of Engineering Education Societies (IFEES).
The GEDC’s mission is to serve as a global network of engineering deans and to leverage the collective strengths of the deans for the advancement of engineering education, research and service to the global community. The importance of diversity and inclusion in the engineering education community is a consistent theme in the GEDC’s conversations on improving the quality of engineering and engineering education.
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