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Department Alumni Fest 2016

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Equity, diversity and inclusion

The Statistics Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Speaker Series   

Are you curious about Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)? Are you wondering how to incorporate EDI practices into your own work? Do you want to engage with different knowledge systems and increase inclusive dialogues? Well, this speaker series may be just for you. All faculty, staff, post-doctoral fellows and students from the department of Statistics and affiliated units are invited to attend!  

What do the sessions look like? 

Sessions will span from September 2022 to January 2023. There will be a 50-minute talk followed by facilitated a 40-minute small-group discussion with lunch provided. Participants are invited to attend the talk alone or both the talk and discussion. Recordings of each talk will be posted after each session. Please check the schedule below for more details about the date, time and location of upcoming sessions. 

Who are the speakers?  

This series will highlight academics who are actively working on EDI research, EDI teaching practices, diverse ways of knowing or other EDI initiatives in the fields of Statistics and Data Science. We are inviting speakers from post-secondary institutions from around the globe as well as from right here at UBC. They will be featured on this page prior to each talk, so check back to see which inspiring presenter this series will host next! 

Why is this important?   

This initiative will help create a space to highlight and support EDI work in Statistics and Data Science. The topics presented by the speakers will help participants gain skills and knowledge to advance inclusivity within and outside the classroom. In addition, these seminars will strengthen EDI networks in and outside of UBC, which will support the exchange of ideas and foster research and engagement in equity and inclusion. 



Thursday, September 22nd | Hybrid talk by Dr. Emma Benn from 11am - 11:50am

| Facilitated discussion with lunch in person in room ESB4192 from 11:50am - 12:30pm


Thursday, October 6th | Hybrid talk by Dr. Shandin Pete from 11am - 11:50am

| Facilitated discussion with lunch in person from 11:50am - 12:30pm


Tuesday, November 1st  | Hybrid talk by Dr. Elle Lett from 11am - 11:50am

| Facilitated discussion with lunch in person from 11:50am - 12:30pm

Thursday, November 17th | Hybrid talk by Dr. Evelyn Asiedu from 11am - 11:50am

| Facilitated discussion with lunch in person from 11:50am - 12:30pm


Tuesday, December 6th | Hybrid talk by Dr. Ninareh Mehrabi from 11am - 11:50am

| Facilitated discussion with lunch in person from 11:50am - 12:30pm



Reshaping the Opportunity Structure for Equitable Leadership and Advancement in Statistics, Data Science, and Academic Medicine

In this talk I will discuss how my personal journey as an African-American, female, and lesbian biostatistician has informed my scholarly work and service as it relates to transforming the demographic landscape of biostatistics and data science. Additionally, I will draw attention to the tightly woven interplay between power and privilege as an impediment to and catalyst for progressively reshaping of the opportunity structure for leadership in our field. Lastly, I will share how my commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in statistics and data science has been particularly useful for increasing the recruitment, retention, and advancement of underrepresented trainees and faculty in academic medicine.

Dr. Emma K. T. Benn (she/her) is an Associate Professor in the Center for Biostatistics and Department of Population Health Science and Policy at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS). She is also the Founding Director of the Center for Scientific Diversity and Associate Dean of Faculty Well-being and Development at ISMMS. Dr. Benn holds a Bachelor of Arts from Swarthmore College and a Master's and Doctoral degree in Public Health from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. Dr. Benn has collaborated on a variety of interdisciplinary research projects over the course of her career and is particularly interested in health disparities research. She has committed to increasing diversity, inclusion, and equitable advancement in the biomedical research workforce, more broadly, as well as reducing racial/ethnic disparities in faculty promotion in academic medicine.

Dr. Benn is the co-founder of the NHLBI-funded Biostatistics Epidemiology Summer Training (BEST) Diversity Program and a former co-Chair of the ENAR Fostering Diversity in Biostatistics Workshop. She has served on the American Statistical Association’s Task Force on Antiracism, LGBTQ Advocacy Committee, and Investments Committee. Dr. Benn was co-PI of the NIGMS-funded Applied Statistics in Biological Systems (ASIBS) Short Course aimed at increasing the statistical competency and research capacity of early-stage researchers nationwide. Dr. Benn’s contributions have been celebrated by various organizations including Mathematically Gifted and Black and Graduate Women in Science. Dr. Benn holds the prestigious honor of being an American Statistical Association Fellow for her established reputation and outstanding contributions to the statistical sciences. She is also a member of the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies Inaugural Leadership cohort for her important role in shaping the future of statistics. 

Follow Dr. Benn on Twitter @ EKTBenn.

Organizing committee

Melissa Lee, Assistant Professor of Teaching

Dr. Marie Auger-Méthé, Assistant Professor 

Jonathan Agyeman, PhD candidate

Rowenna Gryba, PhD candidate

Sasha McDowell, PhD candidate 

We gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the Equity Enhancement Fund and the Department of Statistics