Best of the WWEST

Westcoast Women in Engineering, Science and Technology

Welcome to Best of the WWEST (Westcoast Women in Engineering, Science and Technology), where we believe providing role models for women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) can change the world. Come along with us as we talk to incredible women in STEM about their lives, careers, and everything in between.

Episode 3: Women in STEM and the Canadian Armed Forces w/Kayla BouchardEpisode 2: Women in STEM w/Dr. Michelle Kunimoto, Karine Poliquin & Nancy Darling
This episode explores the career progression of women in STEM from university, to industry, and leadership. Dr. Michelle Kunimoto is a Post-Doctoral Scholar at the MIT Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research. During her undergraduate degree, Michelle discovered 4 new exoplanets and she has carried that interest forward to now improving techniques for finding exoplanets. Michelle is also dedicated to inspiring young women and exciting individuals about astronomy. Karine Poliquin is a Civil Engineer with 7 years’ experience in the consulting engineering industry. She started her career as a structural engineer, but halfway through switched her focus to transportation design. Most of her projects involve low-volume road design and ice road engineering in northern Canada. During her spare time, Karine volunteers for the ACEC-BC EDI committee, and for Women in Consulting Engineering. Nancy Darling is the creator and project administrator for the Women in Trades Training (WITT) Project at Okanagan College. The program introduces women to the building trades and supports women to step into a career in the trades. Nancy received a BA in Community Rehabilitation from the University of Calgary, and was motivated to develop the WITT program after noticing the underrepresentation of women in trades and the systemic barriers to their participation. Listen to the Best of the WWEST on Spotify, Apple, Google, Amazon, iHeart, Gaana, and Castbox Visit wwest-cwse.ca to learn more about WWEST and to listen to other available episodes.
Mar 8 2022
46 mins
Episode 1: Intro to the New WWEST Chair w/Dr. Jennifer JakobiEpisode 111: Marg Lathan P.Eng, WinSETT Chair and President of Aqua Libra Consulting
Marg Latham P.Eng has been around the scene for a long time. She’s a pioneer for women and intersectionality in STEM, she’s a leader, and she loves to build things! Listen to this episode for some real gems of wisdom and advice and an all-around fun conversation between Marg and WWEST podcast producer and host Vanessa. (Please excuse any audio hiccups in this remotely recorded interview.) Marg Latham was the only woman to graduate in civil engineering from Queen’s University in 1974. Since then, she has continued to be a pioneer and trailblazer. Marg is a professional engineer and certified management consultant. She is President of Aqua Libra Consulting Ltd., a management consulting firm. Since starting her business in 2010, she has helped public and private engineering organizations improve professional practice and quality management. For five decades, Marg has also been a champion for women in engineering and construction across Canada. She is currently the Chair of the Canadian Centre for Women in Science, Engineering, Trades and Technology (WinSETT), an organization committed to fostering opportunities for women to enter, stay, grow and lead at all levels in science, engineering, trades and technology careers. Marg is the 2021 recipient of the RA McLachlin Award, one of the Presidents Awards presented annually by EGBC. For full shownotes, transcription, and land acknowledgement visit http://i.sfu.ca/HAjtZe Relevant Links: 2021 President's Award - Engineers & Geoscientists BC - R.A. MacLachlan Memorial AwardGender-Based Analysis Plus (GBA+) - Women and Gender Equality CanadaSkill Builders - WinSETT CentreWinSETT Centre Hosted by: Vanessa Hennessey Theme Music: “Positive and Fun” by Scott HolmesProduced by: Vanessa Hennessey
Dec 28 2021
45 mins
Episode 110: Janet Phan, Founder & Executive Director, Thriving ElementsEpisode 109: Sadé Akinbami P.Eng, Civil Engineer & ArtistEpisode 108: Jasmine Shaw P.Eng, Entrepreneur, and Changemaker
Nov 23 2021
45 mins
Episode 107: Pride in STEM with Dr. Ben Britton
Dr. Ben Britton joins host and producer Vanessa just in time for LGBT STEM Day. The conversation about 2SLGBTQ+ people's participation in STEM is ramping up more and more, and we're talking about what employers and those in academia can do to create a more welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for 2SLGBTQ+ folks. We also cover what kinds of unique circumstances this community experiences, with some harrowing statistics that show how much work needs to be done to be inclusive to 2SLGBTQ+ people working in and studying STEM. (Please excuse any audio hiccups in this remotely recorded interview.) Ben Britton is an Associate Professor in Materials Engineering at UBC, teaches on the Manufacturing Engineering programme and holds a visiting Readership at Imperial College London. Ben leads a research group looking at characterising the performance and manufacturing of materials used in high risk high value applications, as well as materials used to support us achieving a low carbon future. In addition to his technical work, Ben works to agitate for improved equity in STEM, including a focus on LGBTQ+ issues. For full shownotes, transcription, and land acknowledgement visit http://i.sfu.ca/BuhvRT Relevant Links: Cech, E.A. and Waidzunas, T.J., "Systemic inequalities for LGBTQ professionals in STEM"Dr. Britton on WikipediaExperimental Micromechanical Characterisation Research GroupInstitute of Physics, "Exploring the workplace for LGBT+ physical scientists" reportLGBT STEM Day"No Sexuality, Please, We're Scientists" (talk, Imperial College London)Responses from members of 21 STEM professional societies - a Twitter threadSafer Spaces Hosted by: Vanessa Hennessey Theme Music: “Positive and Fun” by Scott HolmesProduced by: Vanessa Hennessey
Nov 9 2021
46 mins
Episode 106: Deyanira Mendoza Dominguez, P.Eng, Certified Project Manager, and Woman of ActionEpisode 105: Major Jessica Ross, Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineer Officer
In this episode, Major Jessica Ross gives us a glimpse into the Canadian Armed Forces and her life therein - how she joined, how it was to train to get to where she is today, and where she's going. She tells us all about her experience at the Royal Military College of Canada, how the work she did during her master's studies in applied science is bettering the world and Canada, and how Dungeons & Dragons can be applied to team dynamics. Plus, you'll hear just how important hockey is in the military. Major Jessica Ross was born in Vancouver and graduated from Vancouver Technical Secondary School. She joined the Canadian Army and graduated from the Royal Military College with a degree in Chemical Engineering in 2007. After being posted to Maintenance Company of 2 Service Battalion in Petawawa, Ontario, employed as the Maintenance Officer of the 1st Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment, and deployed to Kuwait on Operation IMPACT, Major Ross earned a Masters in Applied Science (Chemical Engineering) with a specialization in Science, Society, and Policy. She deployed to Latvia on Operation REASSURANCE in 2020 as the Officer Commanding Technical Services Company, and will be a student on the Joint Command and Staff Program for the upcoming academic year. For full shownotes, transcription, and land acknowledgement visit http://i.sfu.ca/dIEykT Relevant Links: Dungeons and DragonsHow to Join the ForcesMajor Ross on LinkedInMaria Sibylla MerianOperation REASSURANCERoyal Military College of CanadaThink Again (book by Adam Grant) Hosted by: Vanessa Hennessey Theme Music: “Positive and Fun” by Scott HolmesProduced by: Vanessa Hennessey
Oct 6 2021
52 mins
Episode 104: Dr. Britt Drögemöller, Canada Research Chair, Pharmacogenomics and Precision Medicine, Univ. of ManitobaEpisode 103: Aadita Chaudhury, Doctoral Student, Science and Technology Studies, York University
Sep 7 2021
44 mins
Episode 102: Capt(N) Seana Routledge, Deputy Project Manager, Canadian ForcesEpisode 101: Dr. Kimberly Arcand, Visualization Scientist, Chandra X-Ray Observatory, NASA
Aug 10 2021
47 mins
Episode 100: Maggie MacPhee, Grades 7-12 Math Teacher & EducatorEpisode 99: Cassy Weber, CEO, MindFuelEpisode 98: Indigenous Ways of Knowing in STEM with Desiree Marshall-Peer, Cree-Ojibway EducatorEpisode 97: Indigenous Voices on Best of the WWESTEpisode 96: Dr. Kaylee Byers, Deputy Director, Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative, BC nodeEpisode 95: Creating Inclusive Networks to Launch Careers
May 11 2021
33 mins