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Integrated Learning-Living Communities

WISE - Mentoring Women in Science and Engineering

By Alexis Kemble '24, mechanical engineering

For the past three years, the mentorship program has been a vital part of the University of Dayton Women in Science and Engineering program, which allows first-year students to be mentored by an upperclassman of a similar science or engineering major.

This mentorship provides a way for first-years to have a more concrete idea of what their journey may look like in the coming years, unlocks opportunities to ask for advice, and opens resources to various events regarding life as a woman in STEM.

One of these events was held this past Tuesday, where the WISE mentorship program gathered to share a meal and learn about imposter syndrome, which is the psychological phenomenon in which people who have already achieved success are unable to believe in their own competence and intelligence. Dr. Daria-Yvonne J. Graham and Dr. Re’Shanda Grace-Bridges presented about what imposter syndrome is, the way it affects one's identity and self-worth, and tools that can be used to combat it.

As women in male-dominated fields, this presentation is so important to make each person feel as though they belong, deserve to be in these academically challenging majors, and are more than competent to succeed in the field of their choice.

Dr. Graham and Dr. Grace-Bridges did an excellent job at capturing this idea. Through sharing their experiences of feeling like an imposter, they encouraged all of the mentors and mentees to hold one another accountable in our confidence that we are worthy of being exactly where we are. The impact of this evening was made evident through the students’ responses to learning about imposter syndrome.

Student Responses

“The imposter syndrome seminar taught me useful tools for when I am feeling down about myself to help reassure myself that I am to overcome these obstacles and that I am enough. Through this talk, I learned how to handle my self-doubt and to always be reminded that I can do all that I set my mind to.” -Margaret H., ‘25

“The imposter syndrome workshop gave me the validation I needed to stop overthinking every single thing I do. It gave me confidence to overcome that mindset and simple tools to help me remember that I belong in a college-level of learning.” -Lauren D., ‘25

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Welcoming Home WISE 

And where is the support of community found at the University of Dayton? Well, ours is found through WISE!

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