Lily Gossage, director of the College of Engineering Recruitment and Retention Center at Cal State Long Beach (CSULB), has been selected to serve a two-year term on the Women in Engineering ProActive Network (WEPAN) Board of Directors.
WEPAN is a national not-for-profit organization with more than 700 members within a network of 150 colleges and university campuses that offer engineering programs. The network also includes small businesses, Fortune 500 corporations and non-profit organizations.
“The lessons that are best learned are from those whose experiences and perspectives are different from our own. We should continue to challenge stereotyped preconceptions by immersing ourselves in the cultures of others, not just here in the United States but abroad,” said Gossage.
“Insightful knowledge and cultural intelligence comes from talking about issues which we may feel uncomfortable with, but such dialogues strengthen our communities and workplaces, improve our global competitiveness, and help us become citizens of the world, a place that has become increasingly more complex,” she added. “For these reasons, I feel privileged to have been appointed to the WEPAN Board of Directors, a community of thought leaders who are unabashed in their discussions about diversity.”
WEPAN works to transform culture in engineering education to attract, retain and graduate women. With a clear focus on research-based issues and solutions, WEPAN helps its members develop a highly prepared, diverse engineering workforce for tomorrow.
For her dedication and voluntary work toward fostering a sense of community and collaboration among a wide network of diversity advocates, Gossage also was recently appointed to serve on the WEPAN Board of Directors as the director of diversity advancement.
Spearheaded by former WEPAN President Sheila Lange Edwards, who is vice president for minority affairs and vice provost for diversity at the University of Washington, the Diversity Advancement Committee of WEPAN began flourishing about three years ago under Gossage’s leadership as the first chair of the committee.
In this role, Gossage develops and implements strategies that advance the diversity of the membership and proposes partnerships for advancing diversity. Her responsibilities also include ensuring that publicity and marketing materials reflect and speak to the diversity of the membership. She established a professional working group within the organization’s online space, where she archives discussions and activities related to diversity development.
Aside from optimizing online collaboration tools, she takes time to help others improve usage of a vast archive of literature on under-representation of women and minorities in engineering. From a small core group of individuals, Gossage has grown the committee membership to include diversity officers and advocates across the nation, including Brigham Young University, Michigan Technology University, University of Maine, Rochester Institute of Technology and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
"I believe this is great honor for both our college and campus. It is also a great recognition of Lily's tireless efforts on the advancement of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM),” said Panadda Marayong, CSULB assistant professor of mechanical engineering and Society of Women Engineers faculty advisor. “I know that she will work hard to leverage the resources and efforts of WEPAN to advance the status of women students and faculty here at CSULB.”