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Diversity, Equity, And Inclusion In Engineering


Professional engineering is not just about creating buildings, bridges, and other structures. The field is also about fairness and equity. It’s about being inclusive. It’s about being ethical.

In the United States, companies are focusing on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives to avoid discrimination and bias. The engineering field has been no exception.

DEI is a framework that aims to promote the fair treatment and full participation of all people. It focuses on fairness for minorities and those who have faced discrimination in the past based on factors such as race, gender, age, and disability. Given that the professional engineering field consists of white men, DEI aims to make it more inclusive of women and other ethnicities.

For much of the past century, women and minorities did not have access to the same educational opportunities that white men were given, despite the fact that women number 51% of the total population of the United States, with men at 49%. With regards to the STEM workforce, men accounted for 65% of the workforce while women represented 35% of the workforce.

When it comes to science and engineering degrees, the number of bachelors level degrees earned by men and women was a 50/50 split in the United States in 2020. African-Americans earned just 9% of these bachelors degrees, with the Hispanic and Latino populations making up 17%.

The National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) acknowledges that the engineering profession has addressed the core issues of DEI, while understanding that these challenges exist in the United States. The NSPE has asked their members to consider this question: Why should I care about diversity in engineering? First, the engineering profession itself is an accurate reflection of society, and diversity and inclusion can help bring that out.

According to the NSPE, professional engineers can and should contribute to solutions to the problems that DEI issues raise. After all, the best engineers are team players who can deal with difficult challenges and have an ethical obligation that puts the public first.

The best way to achieve DEI goals within the engineering field is to have engineers who accurately represent the public. As America becomes more diverse, this should make perfect sense. This issue of representation reflects fairness.

Another relevant moral principle is care. Broadly speaking, this means considering others. This includes family members, friends, acquaintances, and colleagues. In a general sense, it includes all human beings one encounters. In DEI, the principle of care means to consider all others, without any outcomes or benefits.

Keep Your License With Help From a Tampa Professional Engineers Licensing Lawyer

Professional engineers have to deal with ethics and safety more often than they may think. These are issues that can affect their license if they’re not careful.

If you are dealing with license loss, a Tampa professional engineers licensing lawyer from The Law Offices of David P. Rankin, P.A. can help. I have represented more than 100 professional engineers before the Florida Board of Professional Engineers. Call (813) 968-6633 or fill out the online form to schedule a consultation.