The increasing presence of women at ÉTS
ÉTS receives Parity Certification from Women in GovernanceMonday, March 22, 2021
ÉTS is proud to announce that it has received Parity Certification from the Women in Governance organization in recognition of its commitment to the advancement of parity in the workplace.
To date, less than 50 Canadian organizations have received this certification, including only two other universities. However, research reveals that diversity leads to increased efficiency and innovation among organizations and boards of directors. Therefore, organizations have everything to gain by creating parity in the workplace and becoming more representative of society.
While ÉTS is pleased with this bronze-level recognition, the entire ÉTS community should be delighted with the progress it has made toward parity.
In only a few years, from 2015 to 2020, the proportion of women among executive personnel has jumped from 22% to 37%1, and there is parity on the Board of Directors.
The proportion of women is 44.5% considering all personnel as a whole, and among professors and senior lecturers, women represent 18% of teaching personnel (not including instructors). Female students make up 17.6% of the entire student population at all levels, which represents an increase of 18.7% from 2016 to 2020 (including a 28.4% increase at the graduate level2). These numbers reflect the current state of the engineering sector, where males still predominate, and highlight the relevance of the commitment that ÉTS has undertaken.
Initiatives are carried out on a continuous basis within the context of the wide-ranging Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Action Plan. In recent years, ÉTS has expanded its scope of intervention to include all activities, and has even hired an EDI Consultant. This commitment influences every aspect of the 2019-2022 Strategic Plan, from research, recruitment and educational activities to awareness-raising campaigns to the LGBTQ2+ reality and the hiring process.
Building upon its adherence to Engineers Canada’s 30 in 30 initiative, ÉTS created the Objectif Féminin pluriel (objective: increase female representation) campaign, which aims to increase the presence of women in engineering, and on a wider scale, at all levels throughout ÉTS.
This major project has led to the implementation of a number of initiatives, including the creation of the EDI – Objectif Féminin pluriel Committee, along with several partnerships and activities. It will be interesting to follow the progress of these initiatives and their positive impacts on Women in engineering at ÉTS. The recently launched Palmarès Féminin pluriel program is further proof of the vitality of the campaign. This annual recognition program celebrates 30 female students who have taken inspiring paths, and is not based exclusively on academic excellence, as is often the case, but rather on criteria that can be as varied as the students themselves, including perseverance, leadership, determination, balancing studies with personal life, involvement, etc.
There are numerous other actions underway at the same time at ÉTS. For example, two weeks ago, staff members were invited to attend training on intercultural communication and unconscious bias that was previously available to executives and teaching staff, and a guide to inclusive writing will be made available to the entire ÉTS community this year.
Encouragement to keep going
Receiving Parity Certification from Women in Governance and the associated recommendations will undoubtedly act as an inspiration and encouragement to continue moving forward. As ÉTS Director General François Gagnon said when launching the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan, this is a deeply rooted value at ÉTS: "Universities are the wellsprings of knowledge, understanding and innovation. They have always influenced their environment and are at the heart of major changes in the society in which they operate. That is why, today more than ever, universities must take the lead in creating a world that is more equitable, diversified and inclusive of the identities of each individual."
About Women in Governance
Women in Governance is a non-profit organization with the mission of supporting women in their leadership development, career advancement and access to Board seats.
Toward this end, the NPO organizes major events across Canada, along with mentorship and governance training programs.
1Source: Institutional Research and Process Improvement Office (BRIAP)
Communication and Student Recruitment Service