September 9, 2021

Dear Cockrell School Students, Faculty and Staff,

Welcome back to campus! It’s so great to see faces in person on campus again. At the end of August, I had the pleasure of attending the Fall Kick Off for the Equal Opportunity in Engineering Program (EOE). It was great to see more than 170 new and returning students mingle in the EER atrium. I could tell many shared my excitement about being among fellow engineers again. Identifying friendly faces through masks was admittedly more difficult than at events in the past, but seeing so many masks was heartwarming in a different way — it showcases the degree to which members of our community are prepared to protect and care for each other.

Speaking of EOE, last year marked 50 years (!!) of EOE at The University of Texas at Austin, and there are exciting events planned for the 2021-2022 academic year to celebrate. To learn more about EOE, I encourage you to check out this really great video that expresses the importance and impact of EOE programs on Cockrell School students.

In other news, today the Cockrell School released its second DEI Annual Report, which once again provides details and metrics that capture the diversity of Texas Engineering and describes our ongoing efforts to increase that diversity and to improve inclusion, equity, and a sense of belonging among all members of our community.

Among many other highlights and details, the DEI Annual Report includes information about the first-ever Longhorn Engineering Summer Camp, an ambitious effort undertaken in collaboration with the UT Youth Engagement Centers in the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement as well as some initial results from the six teams of ACT Projects on DEI that were initiated in the past year. I encourage everyone to read the report in its entirety, and if you identify ways you are interested in contributing to our efforts, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

As we start to get back to even more in-person interactions and engagement, I am really excited about continuing our community’s conversations and hard work in the DEI space. We still have much to accomplish, but I am nonetheless proud of our efforts and achievements over the last year.

I hope you are having a great start to your semester, and, again, please feel free to connect with me if you have ideas or would like to become more involved in our DEI initiatives.

Sincerely,

Christine Julien Signature

Christine Julien
Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Cockrell School of Engineering