Diversity Resources for Students


The College of Engineering is committed to creating a learning environment that supports all undergraduate students and helps them find everything needed to become an engineer – and something more. Students who enter the College of Engineering receive education free from discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, age, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, religion, associational preference, status as a qualified individual with a disability, or status as a protected veteran. The connection of engineering students in shared experiences in the common first three semesters, in student organizations, and in professional development builds bonds that last a lifetime.  As an example, “Engineering: A Step Ahead” is a signature program serves as an orientation and networking opportunity for first generation college students, international students, transfer students, under-represented students and other newly admitted students.

All of our student services groups actively recruit diverse students to employ as Peer Advisors, Tutors, Student Ambassadors, and Outreach Agents. In addition, specific programs and student organizations create an environment of belonging for students from demographics underrepresented in engineering. Undergraduate students are welcome to partner through organizations and programmatic efforts to share the message: “Anyone can become an engineer!” Engineering is for students who want to search for quicker, better, and less expensive ways to use the forces and materials of nature to meet today’s challenges.

Welcoming Diverse Graduate Students

Diversity programs have served to build and nourish the graduate community within the College of Engineering. We have been active in recruiting graduate students of diverse backgrounds and have provided mentoring, networking, professional development and financial support for many graduate students. The success of mentoring of underrepresented students in engineering has been built on strong collaboration with other campus units and has been supported though private, state, and federal funding.

Support for graduate programs and research experiences for undergraduates comes from the Office of the Vice President for Research and the Graduate College as well as from significant federal grants. Other support comes form corporate and alumni giving. Campus partners include the Carver College of Medicine, the College of Public Health, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the College of Education, and the Center for Diversity and Enrichment.

Signature programs within the College of Engineering which support graduate students include the Ethnic Inclusion Effort for Iowa Engineering and Women in Science in Engineering which provide opportunities for graduate professional development. In addition, the college is a diversity leader as a part of the University Center for Exemplary Mentoring, supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and as a member of The National GEM Consortium

Cultural and Identity-Based Engineering Student Organizations

The College of Engineering supports cultural and identity-based student organizations.These organizations include:

  • National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)
    • Our mission is to increase the number of culturally responsible Black engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally, and positively impact the community.
  • Out in Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics (oSTEM)
    • oSTEM exists to provide LGBT+ individuals in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) majors and their allies the resources they need for community, self-exploration, and professional development that is not offered in other spheres of campus life. Membership is open to all Iowa Students. We welcome all people of all academic interests and hope to spread acceptance of LGBT+ people and our affinity of the sciences.
  • SHPE
    • SHPE changes lives by empowering the Hispanic community to realize its fullest potential and to impact the world through STEM awareness, access, support and development.
  • Society of Women Engineers (SWE)
    • The Society of Women Engineers is Iowa's chapter of the national SWE organization. We network at conferences, host professional development events, perform outreach events to teach kids about engineering, volunteer, socialize, and have a lot of fun!
  • Women in STEM Ambassadors (WiSA)
    • The purpose of Women in Stem Ambassadors (WiSA) is to increase the participation and advancement of womxn in science, technology, engineering, and math fields through outreach to the local community as well as undergraduate and graduate students. Women in Stem Ambassadors (WiSA) is a community of womxn wishing to enrich their own lives and also give back to the community. We organize educational and social events for members while also planning outreach events for the wider community.

Campus Resources

Across campus, there are many other resources available: