It has been an extreme honour to join the Faculty of Engineering and its dedicated team in helping nearly 3,400 undergraduate and graduate students thrive and grow on their engineering journey. Despite the uncertainties presented by the pandemic, we are striving to return to a somewhat more normal learning environment in Winter 2022 with a focus on in-person learning, mentoring and collaborative experiences that will help our students flourish.
Our changing global landscape is evolving our engineering profession and our faculty is adapting. Our feature article in this issue of WE centres on a cluster of researchers that are tackling housing and food scarcity through a holistic lens to develop and design sustainable, long-term engineering solutions. You’ll read about the significance of preparing a diverse pool of leaders for the blossoming clean energy sector and how our researchers are partnering with industry to drive a nationwide change. You’ll learn that the University of Windsor is home to Canada’s first organization dedicated to countering threats to the connected transportation marketplace and how a faculty member is calling for a revolutionary change to our production systems, consumption choices, energy systems and technologies to achieve environmental stability.
You’ll also be introduced to two trailblazers: Lisa Lortie, an alumna who was recently named a leader in the North American auto industry and whose advice on navigating the automotive sector during the COVID crisis was published in a book; and Roman De Angelis, a third-year mechanical engineering student, professional driver and Detroit Grand Prix winner who raises funds for children’s hospitals with his racing team.
As agents of change ourselves, we are committed to the principals of equity, diversity and inclusion and have made it a priority to increase the number of underrepresented groups in engineering by providing enhanced entrance scholarships for Black, Indigenous, and female students. We are also committed to hiring an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Advisor for Engineering to help everyone — faculty, staff, and students — in their personal journey down this important path.
I am looking forward to connecting with all of you and to inviting you back to campus soon. I encourage you to reach out and introduce yourselves through LinkedIn or by contacting me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bill Van Heyst, Ph.D., P.Eng.
Dean, Faculty of Engineering
Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering