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SCS DEI Update 13

Apr. 16, 2021

Daunte Wright. In the seemingly endless string of police violence against Black Americans, 20-year-old Daunte Wright was shot and killed during a traffic stop in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area — all while the community anxiously watches the trial of a former Minneapolis police officer for the murder of George Floyd.

The Wright and Floyd families have gathered together to protest once again, with much community support. And we stand with them in protest. Demonstrations have returned to the streets along with curfews and calls for nonviolent protests.

While in uniform, Army Second Lieutenant Caron Nazario was pepper-sprayed in the face by Windsor, Virginia, police while sitting in his vehicle. He can be heard on the video saying he was afraid to get out of the vehicle just before he was assaulted. These fearful and terrifying situations must come to an end.

The circumstances change, but the resulting violence of these recurring atrocities remains. We acknowledge these events, but we do not accept them. Once again, I ask that you take action and personally get involved in the greater struggle for equity here at CMU, in the greater Pittsburgh region and beyond. I ask for your ideas, your talents, and your suggestions for DEI programs or events. Please share them with a DEI committee member from your department or email

SCS Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion 

We are pleased to announce that Jodi Forlizzi has agreed to step into the role of SCS Associate Dean for DEI, effective May 1. We will now start recruiting to support this office and organizing the transition to a new director of the HCII.

Upcoming Events / Deadlines

Seminar Series on DEI in CS - Thursday, April 22, 4:30 p.m. EDT
Jeffrey Forbes: “Exploring the National Science Foundation’s Work in Broadening Participation in Computing”
The School of Computer Science at CMU is proud to announce the second seminar in the new Seminar Series on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Computer Science. We welcome Jeffrey Forbes, program director for the Education and Workforce Program in the National Science Foundation's Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering (NSF CISE). The NSF is committed to addressing the longstanding underrepresentation of various populations — including women, Black Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, Pacific Islanders and persons with disabilities — in computing disciplines. This talk will provide an overview of CISE’s efforts with broadening participation in computing (BPC); inform participants about the components of a meaningful BPC project and departmental plan; highlight ongoing and successful BPC activities; and discuss opportunities for funding of BPC including supplements, demonstration projects, and alliances.

Join Zoom Meeting (CMU only):
Meeting ID: 938 3051 5865
Passcode: 814490

Panopto Simulcast Link (open to the public):

NSF Funding Opportunities With Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC)
We strongly encourage interested people to contact both your cognizant NSF program director(s) and the BPC team at by May 17. Submit your supplement requests by the BPC deadline of June 14.

Lesbians Who Tech: Scholarship Opportunity
Our friends at Lesbians Who Tech & Allies have announced that applications are open for their 2021 Edie Windsor Coding Scholarship. This scholarship is for queer women, nonbinary and trans aspiring techies across the world who are ready to jumpstart their careers in technology! The deadline is April 15, so make sure to apply ASAP!

Support / Groups

Tartan Allies Spring 2021
The Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion is hosting virtual Tartan Allies sessions this spring. Two upcoming sessions are being offered.

  • Session One - Thursday, April 29, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. EDT - Register
  • Session Two – Wednesday, May 26, from 1 to 3 p.m. EDT - Register

Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion: Report-It Online Anonymous Reporting Platform
All reports will be documented and discussed to determine the need for follow-up actions. Regardless of incident type, the university will use all shared experiences to transform our campus climate to be more equitable and just. Send questions to or call 412-268-2150. username: tartans; password: plaid

CMU Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) Chapter Seeks Members
The executive board aims to increase and expand outreach to Hispanic or Latinx graduate students to become members, but any CMU graduate student who is interested may join the organization and attend events. If you are interested, email Carlos Ayala Bellido, co-external VP of corporate affairs.

Recruiting Conferences

Virtual Grace Hopper Conference (vGHC) US 2021
vGHC US will be held virtually September 26-29. The prospectus for vGHC 21 sponsorships and bulk registrations will be available from late April until early May. The call for participation has been extended, and applications close at 5 p.m. PT on Wednesday, April 28.

Scholarships and Complimentary Registrations - Scholarships for students, boot camp and faculty opened last month and will close at 11:59 p.m. PT on Wednesday, April 28. Scholarship application.

The SHPE Technical Achievement and Recognition (STAR) Awards recognize those in STEM who are changing lives through their community outreach, work and research. We encourage you to nominate the people you feel represent the best in STEM and embody the SHPE vision. Winners will be announced in the fall and celebrated in November during the 2021 SHPE National Convention in Orlando, Florida. Completed nominations are due Thursday, July 15.

Accessibility Training

The Office of Disability Resources is working to provide the campus community with as many resources as possible on ensuring that digital materials are accessible to all, and has recently made available a series of training videos of the digital accessibility presentations that were held last fall. If you are developing digital content (documents, websites, videos, webinars or other multimedia), check out the digital Accessibility Training Videos for guidance on how to make your materials accessible to all. Recordings of the virtual trainings are offered by Perkins Access, digital accessibility strategists and consultants.

Contact Catherine Getchell, Director of Disability Resources, with any questions.

From the SCS Ph.D. Student Advisory Committee Anti-Racist Working Group

SCS is revising its five-year DEI Strategic Plan. This plan should be a roadmap for how we rectify our exclusion of groups that are underrepresented at SCS. Read the current draft (or see the outline) and comment on both documents to let your voice be heard. The Dean's Advisory Committee Working Group on Anti-racism is pushing for measurable, ambitious goals.

"An institution cannot claim to be at the forefront of the industry if it doesn’t make a serious effort to promote anti-racist change and stronger diversity initiatives." – CMU Alumni

The committee is maintaining an SCS DEI progress tracker to map progress relative to the Towards Anti-Racist Change letter, where we outline steps toward a more inclusive SCS. To date, four items have been completed, five are on track, 40 have been acknowledged and one has been refused.