Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at TTIC

In research and academia, diversity of ideas and counsel are imperative to producing the most impactful outcomes. TTIC’s mission to “achieve international impact through world-class research and education in fundamental computer science and information technology” requires respecting, celebrating and promoting contributors and collaborators from across the spectrum of race, gender, beliefs, sexual orientation, abilities and disabilities, and encouraging inclusion of groups still underrepresented in our field. TTIC endeavors to create a more balanced and welcoming community, both within our walls and outside of them.

We are dedicated to research and academic excellence, and aim to provide opportunity, inclusion, access and expanded representation in STEM fields to communities of color, first-generation college students, women, and others. We will reflect our commitment to these values in our recruiting, hiring, and admissions practices. In the proud tradition of the South Side of Chicago, where TTIC is located, we plan to continue pursuing and expanding community outreach and programs that benefit our neighbors and create long-term opportunity for participants.

To achieve our mission it is essential to pursue the inclusion of those who remain underrepresented at the Institute, the research communities we are part of, and more broadly the science and technology fields. Equally essential is to provide everyone, and in particular those who have not been included in the past, with what they need to succeed. We find this important, not only to gain a broader range of current perspectives, but to grow the future pool of talented individuals who can contribute to research at TTIC and elsewhere. Because TTIC recognizes this, our goal is to make the Institute an even more inclusive, diverse and equitable environment. We are committed to actively moving toward that goal with purpose, transparency, fairness, and vigor.


Outreach Activities

Girls Who Code

Girls Who Code is an after-school coding program for elementary school girls. TTIC has worked with various area CPS schools and is continuing in its role as Community Partner. Volunteer facilitators commit 1-2 hours per week to help teach sessions for a ten-week quarter. If interested, contact Rose Bradford at rose@ttic.edu.

Chicago Pre-College Science and Engineering Program (ChiS&E)

Chicago Pre-College Science and Engineering Program (ChiS&E) is a weekend program for Chicago Public School students underrepresented in STEM fields. TTIC is working with ChiS&E to develop a robotics curriculum and program for 8-9th graders that will be hosted at TTIC.

Leadership Alliance

Leadership Alliance is a national summer research internship placement program for underrepresented undergraduates in STEM fields. TTIC is currently a member institution and is accepting applications through the program. TTIC faculty interested in being involved in the program should contact Greg Shakhnarovich at greg@ttic.edu.

Broadening Participation in Computing Plan

TTIC has developed a plan for the Institute’s effort towards making TTIC an ever more inclusive, diverse and equitable environment, and towards expanding participation in education, research, and practice of computing at large by groups currently under-represented in the field. This plan describes a range of current and planned activities and provides a roadmap for future evaluation of the effectiveness of TTIC’s effort in this domain.


Resources

Women at TTIC

Women@TTIC is a group of women faculty, research assistant professors, courtesy faculty, and PhD students at TTIC. Quarterly meet-ups have been a tradition where the group members have hearty conversations over lunch. This tradition has continued in remote settings during the past year with fun meet-ups including virtual games of Balderdash and Escape-Room. Beyond the usual tradition, the group also occasionally holds joint student events with UChicago Grad Women in Computer Science (GWiCS) which enables more interdepartmental interaction.

To contact the group you can send an email to:

Sepideh Mahabadi: mahabadi@ttic.edu

Ankita Pasad: ankitap@ttic.edu

Workshops and groups

Feedback

For feedback or comments, for example identifying an area where we have room for improvement, suggesting an additional resource that may be of interest to the broader community, or anything else you’d like to bring to the attention of the TTIC DEI committee and institutional leadership, email us at dei-committee@ttic.edu, or drop an anonymous suggestion at this form.