Meet the 2023-24 CS-IDEA Committee

In both the workforce and educational pipeline, computer science remains one of the least diverse fields, particularly in terms of the involvement of women and underrepresented minorities.

Launching in 2019, the Computer Science Inclusiveness, Diversity, Equity, and Advocacy (CS-IDEA) Committee is committed to supporting and recruiting a diverse community of students, staff, and faculty and helping everyone in this community to thrive. This requires deliberate work to build an inclusive and supportive environment for those from historically underrepresented and non-traditional backgrounds in the Department of Computer Science & Engineering.

Each year, students, faculty and staff are elected to the CS-IDEA Committee based on their passion for inclusiveness and willingness to do the work to build a better environment within the department for diverse voices. Learn more about the 2023-24 Committee and why they joined!

Eman Ramadan - IDEA Committee Chair/Lecturer and Research Associate (she/her) 

I am dedicated to enhancing the inclusivity of the computer science (CS) community, ensuring that individuals at all levels, including undergraduates, graduates, postdocs, staff, and faculty, have an equal opportunity for success by dismantling barriers. My commitment is reflected in my continuous involvement with this committee since its inception in 2019. This year, our focus is on fostering awareness regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) issues. We aim to achieve this by organizing engaging events and activities that unite the community. Additionally, we actively generate innovative ideas and propose initiatives to our highly supportive leadership, laying the groundwork for future improvements. Soliciting feedback from our community is a priority, as we value their input on crucial matters and welcome suggestions on how we can collectively transform the CS environment into a more inclusive and equitable space for everyone.

Isayas Adhanom - Post-doctoral Associate (he/him)

My personal journey through the challenges associated with lack of representation in CS has fueled my dedication to advocating for diversity, equity, and inclusion. I am eager to utilize my insights and experiences to contribute meaningfully to initiatives that promote a more inclusive and equitable environment in our department and in the CS community in general.

Elizabeth Jensen - Faculty (she/her)

I think this is a very important aspect of promoting our department, and it is important that we encourage a broad range of people to engage with computer science at all levels.  It takes work to support and increase inclusion and diversity in the department, and I am committed to helping achieve these goals and activities.

Harmanpreet Kaur - Faculty (she/her)

I strongly believe that computer science as a field will be limited in its impact if we don't work towards the core principles of this committee: inclusiveness, diversity, equity, and advocacy. Having been a student in CS departments throughout my academic career, one of my frustrations was the lack of concrete, tangible ways in which I could contribute to work towards those IDEA principles. As faculty, I see myself having a position where I can push for more actionable steps towards a diverse and inclusive CS department. I see being on this committee as an opportunity to work concretely towards positive changes in the department. 

Min Namgung - Graduate Student (she/her)

I'd like to contribute to CS IDEA tasks with graduate student's perspective.

Marissa Pederson - Staff (she/her)

I joined the CS-IDEA committee to promote the values of diversity within the department. Diversity helps ideas thrive within any space, and it is especially important that the computer science community embraces inclusion for all. When everyone is represented, technology and innovation can better serve society.