Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Chemical Engineering Department at Northeastern University has long been committed to inclusion, diversity, and equity. We value our past, present, and future communities and the wide range of perspectives that these groups entail. We strongly believe that our commitment to education includes providing an inclusive and diversity-aware education for the next generation of engineers.
With this in mind, we have put forth guidelines to foster this inclusive, diverse, and equitable environment:

  • We established a Chemical Engineering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee. The committee charge is to propose actionable goals to enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion in the department broadly. The committee also shall advise the Department Chairperson on mechanisms and goals related to chemical engineering students, staff, and faculty for fostering inclusion, reducing systemically biased policies, and leading social justice initiatives.
  • The DEI Committee has developed CHEMEUNITY. Under this umbrella:
    • we have had open discussions about our classrooms and education with those who identify as persons who have been historically excluded in STEM based on their identity, including race, ethnicity, gender, or at intersections of these identities.
    • we sponsored “meet the faculty” lunches for incoming sophomores.
    • Requested that all undergraduate courses be reviewed for outcomes related to DEI.
  • We will host Town Halls each semester for two-way communication about what’s happening within the department and listening to student, staff, and faculty concerns.
  • We are intentional about our seminar invitations that include consideration of gender, race, and ethnicity as well as research areas and industries. We seek requests for speakers from faculty and students.
  • We established groups within Canvas for both undergraduate and graduate students to inform and store information regarding announcements and general communications.
  • We implemented Exit Surveys for all of our programs.
  • The Graduate Committee put forth recommendations for and implemented:
    • Holistic application review
    • Removing the GRE from any consideration in admissions
    • All graduate students perform a review each semester to assess their progress and set goals; this assessment is reviewed by and approved by the faculty advisor.
    • Developed a LGBTQ+ session at graduate open house to better recruit a more diverse set of candidates 
  • The Undergraduate Committee put forth recommendations for and implemented:
    • a review of the course outcomes in all core undergraduate courses to revise or implement a DEI component in each course
    • a teaching retreat for all instructors to share and develop equitable assessment practices
    • guidelines for faculty advisors to better know and share diverse and inclusive resources for students
    • means to better document students involved in research to ensure opportunities are better made available for all students

Related News

Abigail Koppes working in a lab.

Abigail Koppes: Advancing Technology, Treatment, and Diversity in Biomedical Engineering

Associate Professor Abigail Koppes, chemical engineering, began her career as a Future Faculty Fellow through Northeastern’s ADVANCE Office of Faculty Development. Today she is an associate professor, has two patents, and numerous young investigator recognitions.

Rachel Joseph standing next to the Tesla sign.

Solving the Problem of ‘Energy Poverty’

Rachel Joseph, E’23, chemical engineering, is on a mission to ensure that everyone—regardless of their income, address, or race—has access to clean, affordable, and renewable energy. Joseph’s focus on solving the problem of “energy poverty” is part of a journey that began in summer research programs she participated in following her sophomore and junior years […]