Dr. Sheila Ross, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, earned the 2024 Women in Engineering ProActive Network (WEPAN) President’s Award. The award recognizes exemplary accomplishments by individuals or groups who have made significant contributions to WEPAN’s goals and objectives.

Ross is a professor and department chair of the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department. Prior to becoming chair of the department, she served as the electrical engineering program director. Her current area of research involves the integration of best practices for inclusion and success into the electrical engineering curriculum. Ross developed a workshop series on Universal Design for Learning (UDL), which supports learners with a wide variety of challenges—including those due to neurological differences such as ASD and ADHD—as well as a wide variety of other challenges faced by students such as stereotype threat, differences in pre-college experiences, and diverse learning and communication styles.

Outside of the classroom at MSOE, Ross also serves on several university committees creating policy and recommendations, served as advisor her SWE Collegiate chapter, shares research on diversity with other engineering faculty, and participates in outreach to K-12 schools. She received the Making a Difference for Women at MSOE Award in recognition of her institutional contributions. She has been an active WEPAN member, having served as president, director and conference chair for the WEPAN Change Leader Forum in 2017.

WEPAN Award honorees demonstrate extraordinary service, significant achievement, model programs, and exemplary work environments that promote a culture of inclusion and the success of women in engineering. Ross was among 20 exemplary individuals, programs and organizations who received a WEPAN Award at the CoNECD conference in Crystal City, Virginia on Feb. 25–27.

WEPAN is a non-profit educational organization founded in 1990. It is the nation’s first network dedicated to advancing cultures of inclusion and diversity in engineering higher education and workplaces. WEPAN connects people, research and practice. It offers power initiatives, projects and professional development that equips advocates with the tools to create sustainable, systems-level changes that allow ALL in engineering to thrive. To learn more, visit www.wepan.org.