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Lassonde’s Dean Jane Goodyer Appointed to the Executive Committee of the Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC)

Lassonde School of Engineering Dean, Jane Goodyer, has been appointed to the Executive Committee of the Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC) for a three-year term. Created in 2008, GEDC’s mission is to serve as a global network of engineering deans, and to leverage the collective strengths for the advancement of engineering education and research.

“As GEDC Chair, I would like to congratulate Dr. Jane Goodyer on being elected to the GEDC Executive Committee,” said Sunil Maharaj, University of Pretoria, South Africa. “GEDC being a global organization, we value diversity, inclusion and equity coupled with the expertise and leadership of Dr. Goodyer, will certainly strengthen our organization and global reach.”

In her new role, Dean Goodyer hopes to help pave the way for engineering leaders to network and increase the organization’s membership to further its mission, vision and strategic priorities.

“I’m so honoured to join the Executive Committee,” said Dean Goodyer. “GEDC is instrumental in bringing together its members from diverse cultures and geo-political spheres with a shared purpose for nurturing the development of locally pertinent and global engineers, dedicated to creating a more just and sustainable world.”

To make education more accessible, advancing women and other underrepresented groups in engineering, Dean Jane Goodyer has led two key initiatives which are breaking down systemic barriers to post-secondary access and success.

The first started in 2016 when she launched engineering outreach programs for girls across New Zealand. Today, she continues this work through Lassonde’s k2i (kindergarten to industry) academy, engaging youth and K-12 educators in hands-on, free STEM programs. Since 2020, k2i has reached more than 4,500 individuals through 130,000 hours of engagement. The academy designs its work alongside some of the largest and most diverse public school boards in Canada, collaborating to dismantle systemic barriers to opportunities in STEM.

The second supports social mobility through the introduction of Canada’s first fully work integrated degree program model. Launching Fall 2023, the new Digital Technologies program removes financial barriers to degree education for learners who work full-time for four years, earning a salary while devoting approximately 20 per cent of their working hours to studying for a Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc). This uniquely flexible, cost-effective alternative to traditional university study allows learners to be fully employed and gain a qualification, without going into debt. Having first piloted this program in New Zealand, Dean Goodyer is now bringing the model to Canada.  

“I’m all about building inclusive, collaborative communities to empower participation, particularly for those underrepresented in STEM,” said Dean Goodyer. “Having worked as a professional and then an academic in the UK, New Zealand and now Canada, I consider myself a global engineer who truly understands the importance of bringing together people with different perspectives. To advance engineering education and research, it’s these diverse views and experiences which allow us to create solutions and a foundation for tackling global challenges.”

In the 2022 GEDC election, members voted for Sushma Kulkarni, Rajarambapu Institute of Technology, India as Chair-Elect and K. Manivannan, Vinayak Mission’s Research Foundation, India, as Secretary/Treasurer. Joining Jane on the Executive Committee are five elected members: Ahmet Oztas, Epoka University, Albania; Babak Dastgheib-Behesti, New York Institute of Technology, USA; Robert Bishop, University of South Florida, USA; Rohit Kandakatla, KG Reddy College of Engineering & Technology, India; and Zhenghe Xu, Southern University of Science and Technology, China.

Each engineering dean brings important, valued perspectives, shaped by their unique professional and personal learning journey. Sharing these stories through the GEDC network enables them to forge human connections and commonalities that foster understanding, ideas and innovation as they strive to transform schools in support of societies.