NEWT Culture of Inclusion Awards

NEWT’s Inclusion Oversight Board (IOB) is pleased to announce the recipients of NEWT’s inaugural D&I Faculty/Staff and Student Recognition Awards. For the faculty/staff track, the recipients were Drs. Francois Perreault of Arizona State University and Michael S. Wong of Rice University. For the student track, the recipients were Njideka Syndi Nnorom of Rice University and Naushita Sharma of Arizona State University. These were difficult decisions as the nominations we received were outstanding. We appreciate all of the work our members are doing to ensure NEWT has a culture of inclusion and is making strides to recruit and retain members of underrepresented groups. Many thanks to all of you for your support of NEWT’s diversity and inclusion initiatives.

François Perreault receives Culture of Inclusion Award

It is an honor for me to receive this inaugural NEWT Culture of Inclusion Award. NEWT is a wonderfully diverse environment and it is one of the many reasons why it is such a great place to be working in. I am glad to be able to make an impact by helping enhance our culture of inclusion in the center. Fostering an inclusive and diverse environment is, I believe, part of our societal mission, as universities. It is something that we need to be all working together on if we want to make a difference.

Mike Wong accepts Culture of Inclusion Award

Being honored with the D&I award along with my fellow recipients reminds me how special it has been to be part of the NEWT Center. The research is outstanding, the ideas are awe-inspiring, the NEWT vision is noble! I am incredibly proud to work alongside my faculty colleagues, the students and postdocs, our staff, and partners in creating a culture of support and inclusiveness. I look forward to attracting and working with future researchers, especially students with diverse backgrounds and viewpoints, to the Center.

Njideka Nnorom receives Culture of Inclusion Award

This past year, I got the opportunity to work on issues relevant to our current social climate, as well as issues that personally affect me. I am quite honored to have been given this opportunity to begin discussions between the NEWT faculty, students and staff to speak candidly on diversity and inclusion (D&I) initiatives. Through these events, I believe that I have grown as a person. In order to navigate these conversations, I have had to take into account different voices and narratives causing me to learn how to be a better listener and communicator. While I am only the D&I Co-Chair for a year, and the events that we have had barely scratch the surface, I look forward to the direction we will go and I will continue to be active and fully supportive in any new endeavor.

Naushita Sharma receives Culture of Inclusion Award

I thank NEWT for honoring me with this award. It is my great pleasure to share this award with Syndi, as we have worked together towards trying to initiate a conversation about diversity, inclusion and equity among students and staff. I sincerely thank the NEWT D&I Board, especially Theresa Chatman, who has always encouraged us to pitch forward our ideas. I come from India, where since childhood, we have learnt the phrase: “UNITY IN DIVERSITY”. India is a culturally diverse country, with over 20 recognized languages, each state is culturally different from its neighbor. People come from different backgrounds which shape individual experiences. Acknowledging this fact – to me – has been the biggest motivation to bridge and understand differences; and forge a meaningful conversation around diversity and inclusion. I am grateful to accept this award and look forward to working towards promoting D&I in workplaces as I move forward

NEWT’s Inclusion Oversight Board (IOB) obtains nomination letters for its inaugural NEWT Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Recognition Award. The purpose of this award is to recognize those who have demonstrated a strong commitment to NEWT’s diversity and inclusion efforts. There are two tracks, one for students and one for faculty and staff and carries an honorarium of $500 each. Self-nominations are also welcomed.

Our D&I objectives are:

1. Develop, promote, and sustain a culture of inclusion through a series of efforts that allow all NEWT participants to feel welcomed, be acknowledged, feel safe, and succeed.

2. Recruit, support, and retain a diverse cadre of personnel.

To learn more, contact Theresa Chatman