Our Impact

From the outset, WISEST has been actively involved in understanding how best to encourage diversity in science, engineering, technology and related fields. Each year we interact with over a thousand female school-aged students from across Alberta. The results of these interactions help us to better evaluate and adjust our programs, services, and activities so we better meet the needs of the individuals who access our services.

We also offer guidance to outside organizations and groups who seek advice on how to engage women and girls to participate in events.

Faces of WISEST

  • Dana, BSc., SRP 2013

    I am lucky to be one of the students WISEST has impacted. I knew since I was a little girl that I loved learning and thought that I might like to be a scientist, but I didn't really know any scientists apart from Bill Nye. I wondered what a scientist looked like, what they did everyday, and how they arrived at that career. My first encounter with WISEST was at the Choices Conference for sixth grade girls, where I got to see that scientists look surprisingly like everyone else, and maybe even a little bit like me.

    My next experience with WISEST was being accepted to the Summer Research program for Grade 11 students. During orientation, I was told that as a women in STEM, we were important and, moreover, necessary to the scientific community. In hearing this, it made me feel that not only was I interested in science, but that the science community was interested in me. It was during the Summer Research Program that I remember feeling that I had found people I belonged with, and where I could see the potential that my future might hold.

    Since the Summer Research program in 2013, I have graduated from the University of Alberta with an honours degree in chemistry, written 130 lab reports, worked in three research labs, became a volunteer, lead a student group, and have now started a new journey to become a physician. The achievements I could only dream of at 16 years old have become a reality, and I will be forever grateful that WISEST gave me the early exposure to STEM that helped start me on my journey.

    Apart from encouraging me academically, WISEST has also provided me with a wonderful community and a network of support. I am so thankful for the impact WISEST has had on me, and I sincerely hope I can see WISEST continue its invaluable work for women in STEM for many years to come.

  • Nancy, P.Eng., SRP 2008

    My journey with WISEST began in 2008 as a participant in the WISEST Summer Research program. After starting the program as a Grade 11 student uncertain about which path to take for a future career, my summer work in a Mining Engineering lab enabled me to discover my passion for engineering. This first-hand exposure to engineering saw me realize the potential impact engineers hold in creating designs and processes that benefit society on a large scale - topics like transit systems, energy development and wastewater treatment plants. Fast forward to 2019, and I now hold a Bachelor of Science in Materials Engineering and am a professional engineer working for Enbridge. At work, I am striving to lead the diversity conversation as a member of the company's Females in Engineering Employee Resource Group.

    Through my career, I have been fortunate to learn more about what being an engineer means in our diverse country, by completing work in five provinces and one territory. Ultimately, though, it is because of WISEST that I am an engineer today, and for this I will be forever grateful. WISEST has created an amazing network of program participants, and supporters in Alberta and across Canada. These people all understand the "WISEST Magic" and I am excited to see just what the future holds for their own STEM outreach stories.