Welcome Week: Engineering Redsuits promoting inclusivity and diversity

September 1, 2017

From the moment first-year students arrive on campus, they are greeted by the smiling faces of Welcome Week representatives. The “Redsuits,” as they’re known in the Faculty of Engineering, help new students feel at home. 

This year, McMaster Engineering Society’s Welcome Week Planning Committee took things one step further. In an effort to engage the entire incoming class, more inclusive and diverse activities were unveiled this past week.

Building animations and new friendships

Christopher Anand, Associate Professor, Computing and Software teamed up with McMaster Engineering Society to create a workshop for students interested in programming.

“We wanted students to meet others with similar extracurricular interests, and start developing a support network,” explained Anand.

Not only did students have fun experimenting with the programming tool, Elm, they also contributed to a project that has real-world results. They created animations for a visually appealing app for adolescents at risk of mental illness. Anand is developing the app with Christine Wekerle, Associate Professor, Paediatrics.

“Students can create any kind of cute animation they want,” said Michael Barbosa, third year Process Automation Technology student and proud Redsuit who helped to facilitate the event. “The app will help young people manage their feelings and thoughts on a day to day basis.”

Exploring Mac’s natural wonders

The soothing sights and sounds of nature appealed to students looking for a more relaxing Welcome Week activity. Redsuit and fourth year Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering student, Pooja Srikanth organized a hike through nearby McMaster Forest with help from Sebastian Irazuzta, PhD Biology student.

There were 25 students who explored McMaster’s surrounding green space, while learning about the native species in the area, and research opportunities.

“We learned about the tall grass prairies, the habitat’s native species and what people are doing to combat invasive species in the area,” said Irazuzta. “The McMaster Forest also serves as a Smithsonian forest plot, providing lots of baseline data for researchers.”

McMaster Engineering Welcome Week events are happening until Monday, September 4. You can find the full calendar of events here.

 

McMaster Engineering
McMaster Engineering
First year students tested their programming skills at a workshop hosted by Christopher Anand, Associate Professor, Computing and Software. The group created animations for a visually appealing app for adolescents at risk of mental illness.

McMaster Engineering
McMaster Engineering
There were 25 new students who explored McMaster’s surrounding green space, while learning about the native species in the area, and research opportunities.

 

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