Equity, diversity and inclusion

HighTechU group photo by the Petch fountain
HighTechU academy students during the pilot project in Summer 2018. While technical and soft-skill development were an important part of the pilot, one of the primary goals of HighTechU is to address diversity gaps in the tech sector.

Engineering and Computer Science

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Statement


To be a Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science whose students, staff and faculty are representative of the population composition of Canada and thrive in a culture of inclusion, respect, wellness and accessibility.

  • To provide a research, study and work environment that attracts and retains a flourishing community in terms of gender, ethnicity, race, Indigeneity, and abilities.
  • To ensure inclusivity and equity for all the people in our diverse Faculty.

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan *

  1. Initiatives to increase the number of undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty who identify as underrepresented genders and groups include:
    • targeted outreach and student recruiting;
    • assessment of all qualified undergraduate and graduate applicants in underrepresented gender(s) [1] ;
    • annual reporting (to Faculty Council) of gender numbers of undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty; and
    • targeted hiring of faculty identifying as underrepresented gender(s).
  2. Initiatives to increase the number of Indigenous undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty include:
    • expanded outreach and recruiting;
    • assessment of all qualified undergraduate and graduate Indigenous applicants; and
    • targeted hiring of Indigenous faculty.
  3. Initiatives to improve the Faculty’s culture and atmosphere include:
    • endeavor to use gender-neutral and Indigenous-inclusive language in communication and documents;
    • completion of Indigenous Cultural Acumen training by all members of the Faculty community;
    • completion of Sexualized Violence Prevention and Response training by all members of the Faculty community; and
    • completion of Professional and Cultural Safety training by all members of the Faculty community.
  4. To continue to improve this Statement and the Action Plan to address equity, diversity, inclusion and underrepresentation across the Faculty.

Created: October 7, 2020

[1] Each admission cycle, qualified applicants who self-identify as members of under-represented genders and groups will be reviewed and considered for suitable offers.

* The Action Plan list will change from time to time and will be submitted for a full review every five years.

The Faculty shares the university's objectives to ...

  • Include initiatives to enhance the welcoming and supportive sense of community
  • To actively recruit and retain outstanding students from diverse regions and backgrounds and remove barriers to admission and retention other than academic and creative potential
  • To continue to increase the number of Indigenous students graduating from the Faculty, building on our commitment to and our unique relationship with the First Peoples of Canada
  • To further enhance internationalization through student and faculty recruitment and mobility, research partnerships, internationalization of the curriculum and experiential learning.

We appreciate and welcome your comments on equity, diversity and inclusion within the Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science

Privacy statement: The optional contact information collected in this form will only be used to contact you if you wish to get a response. No private information will ever be passed on to anyone else or used elsewhere.

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You may also place comments in the drop box labeled “Engineering Feedback” — beside ELW A123 (Solid Mechanics Lab, near to Nibbles and Bytes).

If at any time you need to talk with someone about equity, diversity or inclusion concerns, you are encouraged to contact the Equity and Human Rights Office: eqhr@uvic.ca or 250-721-8488. If you have questions or concerns about the sexualized violence policy or if you wish to make a disclosure and/or report, please call the sexualized violence resource and intake line: 250-721-8021.

EDI webinars

Reducing bias and discrimination in STEM

In this talk, hosted by UVic’s Chemistry department in February 2021, Dr. Lisa Willis discusses her top 10 strategies to address the problem of bias and discrimination in STEM disciplines. Willis, an assistant professor at the University of Alberta, has also designed InclusiveSTEM, a literature-based and data-driven series of lectures and workshops about EDI in science.

Writing effective EDI statements

In a second hosted presentation, Dr. Lisa Willis provides guidance on how to write effective EDI statements. This talk includes using appropriate language, addressing different dimensions of identity, how to approach EDI in grant applications, and what goes into an EDI statement.

UVic policy statement

Diversity, equity, fairness, and respect are paramount values at the University of Victoria. The University promotes a safe, respectful and supportive learning and working environment for all members of the university community. The University fosters an environment characterized by fairness, openness, equity, and respect for the dignity and diversity of its members. The University strives to be a place that is free of discrimination and harassment, injustice and violence. The strength and vibrancy of the University is found in the diverse life experiences, backgrounds and worldviews of all its members.

For more information, read the rest of University of Victoria's Policy on Human Rights, Equity and Fairness (GV0200).

We acknowledge with respect the Lkwungen-speaking peoples on whose traditional territory the University of Victoria stands, and the Songhees, Esquimalt and WSÁNEĆ peoples whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.

  • UVic's first Indigenous plan builds on our longstanding commitment to and relationships with Indigenous communities, both locally and nationally.
  • The Equity and Human Rights Office provides leadership in the development of plans, policies and procedures which support UVic's organizational and legislative commitments to provide equitable access to and participation in employment and educational opportunities.
  • The Office of the Vice-President Academic and Provost supports units in creating welcoming and diverse learning, teaching and working environments. The page lists a number of resources for faculty, staff and students.
  • The Centre for Accessible Learning provides information about and support with academic accommodations. Their trained staff will help you to plan for success in your degree.
  • Counselling Services offer free professional, confidential, inclusive support to currently registered UVic students, including individual counselling, groups and workshops.
  • The First People’s House currently offers a social, cultural and academic centre for Indigenous students at UVic and serves as a safe and welcoming place that encourages the building of community.
  • The Office of Indigenous Academic & Community Engagement supports the success of Indigenous students attending UVic, connecting students with educational, financial and cultural resources on campus and in local communities.
  • The International Office supports international students at UVic. The International Commons welcomes you, answers your questions, and provides academic programs and resources to support student success.
  • In case of a conflict situation with a staff or faculty member, students have access to free consultation with the Office of the Ombudsperson, which advocates fair procedures and offers information and guidance on students' rights & responsibilities, and UVic regulations & procedures.
  • The Sexualized Violence Resource Office in Equity and Human Rights is survivor-centred and trauma-informed and provides information, advice, support, and options to anyone impacted by sexualized violence.
  • Student Mental Health supports positive student mental health and well-being, offering numerous resources, supports and opportunities.
  • The University of Victoria Students’ Society and the UVic Graduate Students' Society provides advocacy, representation, services, and events for its members.