Women in engineering executive leadership society

The WSU College of Engineering Women Engineering, Engineering Technology and Computer Science Leadership Society brings together college of engineering female alumni from diverse backgrounds with a common goal: to empower female student engineers at WSU College of Engineering. It is the intention of the Leadership Society to build enthusiasm for women in the engineering, engineering technology and computer science profession to help our community and beyond. Members are female engineering, engineering technology and computer science alumni who recognize that women as alums have the capability of making a tremendous impact at Wayne State University, its students, faculty and staff. 

Each year we will invite successful female engineering, engineering technology and computer science alumni who have reached significant levels of achievement in their professional endeavors and who are committed to maintaining the highest standards of their profession. The Leadership Society will empower female students aspiring to be engineers and computer scientists to achieve full potential in their careers, expand the image of the engineering, computer science and technology professions as a positive force in improving the quality of life, and demonstrate the value of diversity and inclusion. The Leadership Society will work with the College of Engineering's student organization professional societies, recently formed the College Committee on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as well as female faculty and administrators in the College. 


The Leadership Society members will work in concert with the College and its student organizations to plan strategies for promoting women's initiatives in the college. Such participation can include but is not limited to mentoring, participation in the college's summer camps for grade school and high school students, recruitment receptions, and regional events. Member responsibilities include: 

  • Assist in identifying on a yearly basis, female college of engineering, engineering technology and computer science alumni who have made a significant difference for entrance into the Leadership Society 
  • Serve as a catalyst within their community to stimulate interest in STEM. 
  • Serve as a mentor to female engineering, engineering technology, and computer science students in the College of Engineering. 
  • Serve as an ambassador at regional networking events, globally. 
  • Participate through attending an annual event welcoming new Leadership Society members. 
  • Participate, if possible, in the College of Engineering's summer camps for grade school and high school students. 
  • Participate, if possible, in recruitment receptions. 
  • Participate if possible in helping students with experiential learning opportunities, i.e. co-op and internships. 
  • Promote a sense of pride and accomplishment for studying engineering, engineering technology and computer science. 
  • Advocate for the needs of WSU College of Engineering female students. 
  • Networking opportunities amongst alumni, and between alumni and students. 

Potential members are nominated, either by themselves or someone else, which will be reviewed by the selection committee who is appointed by the Dean of the College of Engineering. The selection committee will present all new members at the annual event. 


Should you wish to be part of this society, nominate a female engineer or contact any society member, please reach out to: 

Kris Theisen
Senior Director of Development

Committee members

Shannon Dare WSU alumni
Heba Al-Hassan SWE VP
Susan Iwasiuk WSU alumna
Susan Rokosz WSU alumna
Vanessa Tillo WSU alumna
Maryssa Weir WSU alumna
Tonya Whitehead WSU alumna
Claire Brender   Sr. corporate relations officer, WSU College of Engineering
Ece Yaprak WSU alumna, technology division chair and professor, WSU College of Engineering
Kris Theisen Senior director of development, WSU College of Engineering