Professional Development

Women in Materials Science & Engineering Breakfast

7:00 AM–9:00 AM Apr 24, 2019

PCC North, 200 Level, Room 231 ABC


Olivia A. Graeve, University of California, San Diego
Latino Engineering Faculty in the United States—A Personal Perspective and Journey

A personal narrative, journey and perspectives on diversity and equity in the sciences and engineering will be presented. Views on multiculturalism, empathy and the building of human connections will also be discussed. In addition, a variety of demographic characteristics of Latino faculty in engineering at U.S. universities, including academic rank, gender, geographical distribution across the 50 U.S. states and country of origin will also be presented. The total population of Latino engineering faculty is approximately 587, with 485 men (83%) and 102 women (17%). Of this total, we find that about 86% are immigrants from Mexico, Central America and South America, with Mexico contributing the greatest number (25.9%, Mexico = 152).  We propose that efforts must be made to increase the ranks of U.S.-born Latino engineering faculty in higher education, as the current number is a mere 48, a problem that has its roots in the extreme lack of pipeline of Hispanic Americans into doctoral programs and the professoriate. The consequences of ignoring this issue results in a lack of role models for our U.S.-born Latino youth, who look for examples of successes in academia from among the people they "grew up with." Discussion will be based on "Latino engineering faculty in the United States" [G. Arellano, O. Jaime, and O.A. Graeve, MRS Bull. 43 (2), 131–133 (2018).

Men and women of materials science are invited to attend this discussion and complimentary breakfast. Advance sign-up and ticket required. A limited number of seats are available by preregistering online by April 5. For on-site availability and sign-up, please visit the MRS Help Center in PCC North, 100 Level, Foyer, by 12:00 pm on Tuesday.

About Olivia A. Graeve

Olivia A. Graeve joined the University of California, San Diego, in 2012, and is a professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Director of the CaliBaja Center for Resilient Materials & Systems and Faculty Director of the IDEA Engineering Student Center. Graeve holds a PhD degree in materials science and engineering from the University of California, Davis, and a Bachelor’s degree in structural engineering from the University of California, San Diego. Her area of research focuses on the design and processing of new materials for extreme environments, including extremes of temperature, pressure and radiation.

Graeve has been involved in many activities related to the recruitment and retention of women and Hispanic students, and has received several prestigious awards including the National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award, 2006 Hispanic Educator of the Year Award by the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and the 2010 Karl Schwartzwalder-Professional Achievement Award by The American Ceramic Society. More recently, she has been inducted into the Tijuana Walk of Fame (2014) and the Mexican Academy of Engineering (2016), and named a Fellow of The American Ceramic Society (2017). In addition, Forbes Magazine named her one of the 100 Most Powerful Women of Mexico (2017).