By Grace Washington
In a compelling and insightful event, “The Color of Science,” hosted by Dr. Frederic Bertley, President and CEO of COSI, brought together exceptional leaders in tech to discuss crucial topics surrounding diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) in the Science, Technology Equity, and Inclusion (STEM) Workforce. The event, held recently, featured prominent voices from various industries, shedding light on their experiences and insights.
Vice President of Community Engagement Inclusion and President of American Electric Power (AEP), Ms. Janelle Coleman, spoke passionately about her journey in the energy/electricity industry. Addressing the impact of the energy sector on the community, Ms. Coleman emphasized the importance of diversity in leadership roles within the industry.
Ms. LaDavis Drane, ESQ., Director Global Head of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity at Amazon Web Services, shared her perspective on navigating the tech world. Reflecting on her experience as a minority woman in a high leadership position, Drane underscored the opportunities available for individuals from diverse backgrounds. Responding to queries about securing positions in major tech companies like Amazon, she advised thorough research, preparation, and persistence and encouraged young professionals not to give up on their aspirations.
For his part, Mr. Chris Suel, Community Development Regional Manager at Meta, expressed his enthusiasm for contributing to community programs and diversity and inclusion. Suel highlighted Meta’s initiatives in empowering youth and minority groups, including hosting a tech day for Ohio City Schools with about 25 students in attendance. Moreover, he stressed the importance of providing firsthand experiences in the tech industry to students.
At the end of the event, Dr. Frederic Bertley, President and CEO of COSI (Center of Science and Industry), concluded the event by expressing gratitude to the panelists and attendees.
Dr. Bertley emphasized the necessity of such events in the community, creating learning and networking opportunities while promoting inclusivity regardless of background. He shared COSI’s commitment to embracing the New Americans Community and announced plans for more programs related to mental health at COSI.
Furthermore, Dr. Bertley called for increased involvement of young people, scientists, and technologists to contribute to making the world more amazing.
The Color of Science event showcased the power of collaboration and conversation in advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion within STEM fields.
As Central Ohio continues to strive for excellence in science, technology, and industry learning, these discussions serve as an encouragement for positive change and progress in the community.
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