Published: Nov. 21, 2018 By

Graphic reading "We want your innovative ideas on how CU Engineering can recruit and retain women and minority students."In 2018, our college announced a new strategic vision. One pillar of that vision includes getting more underrepresented groups engaged and excelling in STEM fields.

So how do we do this?

Well, we want your ideas. Reaching our goal of becoming the first public engineering college with a 50 percent women undergraduate population, while reflecting the demographics of our state’s high school graduates, requires more than words. And that’s what a new initiative from our BOLD Center is all about.

Last year we sponsored 10 innovative projects, and many are being sustained through independent funding so that they can continue beyond their pilot year. Examples of last year’s programs that continue to be funded include:

  • Art is Engineering: a monthly, pop-up art station in the Engineering Lobby increased students’ sense of belonging while building community and new connections
  • Society of American Military Engineers (SAME): CU Boulder now has an active SAME chapter thanks to the lift from Innovative Inclusion Initiatives grant.
  • Engineer Library: The Gemmill Library hosted a successful career networking event. They plan to repeat and bolster for an even better event this academic year.
  • Women and Engineering: A new course in the Herbst Humanities Institute combined seminars covering the history of women in engineering along with guest lectures by 21 female engineers. The course enrolled 11 female and two male undergrads and will now be a recurring course.

We want innovative ideas from our faculty and staff for how we can recruit and retain women and minority students in engineering. A team from computer science and the BOLD Center is offering grants of up to $3,000 for proposals that help to increase participation and persistence in engineering, computing and applied science.

The deadline is Wednesday, Dec. 5, so dream big and submit your ideas soon. If you have questions about the program, please email

Sarah Miller is the Assistant Dean for Inclusive Excellence in the College of Engineering & Applied Science.