IEEE Women in Engineering

Linda Bushnell IEEE WIE Member
Profession: Research Associate Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA

How did you first get involved in IEEE Women in Engineering?

Linda: I joined IEEE WIE in 2013 when I was appointed the Liaison to IEEE WIE from the IEEE Control Systems Society (CSS). I have been active in the CSS for many years in various leadership roles and was excited to take on this role to learn more about IEEE WIE.

Why did you decide to become an IEEE WIE member?

Linda: I wanted to be an IEEE WIE member to become more involved with the IEEE WIE activities. I felt that being a IEEE WIE member would bring more opportunities to meet other women in IEEE, to expand my network, and to educate others about IEEE and IEEE WIE

What do you wish other people knew about IEEE WIE?

Linda: There is so much to learn about IEEE WIE. The WIE website is a wealth of resources for women in engineering at all levels of their career. IEEE WIE and the IEEE Young Professionals (YP), two groups that will drive the future of IEEE, have coordinated activities, especially at conferences and regional activities. In addition, IEEE WIE is not just for women; many men are active members of IEEE WIE.

What is it like to be an IEEE WIE Volunteer, and what do you enjoy about it?

Linda: I recently attended the in-person IEEE WIE meeting in Washington, D.C. in March 2018 and was happy to meet new people involved in IEEE WIE. There were new board members, new liaisons to technical societies, and new regional coordinators. I was appointed the chair of a subcommittee on visibility. Our committee has spent a lot of time sharing best practices and will be sharing this with all of the IEEE societies, through the IEEE Technical Activity Board, and IEEE regions, in addition to posting on IEEE Collabratec. A few examples of best practices that our subcommittee identified were to host a lunch for women at the society conferences on the first day of the conference and to have a dedicated column highlighting women in engineering in the society magazines.

Why do you feel it is important for women to enter into the field of engineering?

Linda: Engineering is part of the STEM field and is a very exciting area for a career. It is important for women of all ages to enter the field of engineering because they will increase the diversity of the field, which is now only 12% women, thus bringing a wealth of new perspectives, technical skills, and creativity to solve real-world problems in a way that will positively impact society.