Belonging, Representation, and Inclusion in CS (BRICS)

Why are Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Important?

In the Computer Science Department, we are steadfast in our commitment to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Understanding the transformative power of DEI in shaping the future of technology, we recognize its critical role in enhancing innovation, creativity, and problem-solving within our field. By integrating DEI principles into the core of our activities, we aim to create an environment that not only welcomes but also celebrates diversity in all its forms. Our efforts are focused on building a community where everyone feels valued, supported, and empowered to achieve their full potential.

Computer Science Departmental DEI Goals

Working closely with our faculty, we've crafted a set of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) goals for the Computer Science Department, inspired by the University of Iowa's DEI framework. These goals underline our commitment to building an inclusive community and embedding the values of equity and diversity into our academic and professional activities. They aim to steer us towards a more supportive and welcoming environment for everyone in our department.

  1. Create and sustain an equitable and inclusive computer science department
  2. Recruit, retain, and advance a diverse campus community of faculty, staff, and students
  3. Integrate diversity, equity, and inclusion into the computer science curriculum
  4. Enhance department-wide diversity, equity, and inclusion accountability, effectiveness, and collaboration

Efforts Initiated Since Fall 2023:

  • DEI Interns: Establishment of departmental DEI interns dedicated to advancing DEI initiatives within the computer science department.
  • Student Workshops: Implementation of workshops designed to encourage dialogue among students, providing a platform for sharing experiences and fostering a deeper understanding of DEI challenges and opportunities.
  • Established DEI Goals: Development and commitment to clear DEI goals, with ongoing review and reinforcement by the department (see above).

Ongoing Efforts:

  • DEI Newsletter: Launch of a newsletter to share opportunities, spotlight student experiences, and strengthen community connections.
  • Town Hall Event(s): Organization of department-wide town hall event(s) aimed at uniting students and faculty, presenting new department-wide goals, and encouraging open discussion, supported by the Center for Restorative Practices.
  • Curriculum Workshops: Continuation and expansion of workshops in foundational courses to enhance our collective understanding of DEI needs within the department.
  • Community Engagement Events: Hosting of departmental events designed to foster connections and facilitate learning from diverse perspectives.

Additional Resources about DEI in Computing

Here are a couple of articles that provide additional information about DEI in computer science and related fields:

Who We Are

Current and past members of the BRICS team include:

  • Hamza Shemsu '24
  • Claire Jensen '24
  • Maria Khan '25E
  • Prof. Lillian Pentecost
  • Prof. Scott Kaplan
  • Prof. Kristy Gardner

Tags:  DEI 

We Welcome Your Feedback

The Computer Science Department invites input on fostering a more equitable and inclusive atmosphere within our field and department. Kindly share your thoughts and recommendations with us in the form below. You can also email us at