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Women in Science and Engineering

Promoting careers for women in the natural sciences and engineering is a priority for NSERC. We are committed to increasing the number of women in these fields, facilitating the accommodation of career and family, and nurturing mentorship. Explore this page to learn more about the policies, programs and activities NSERC has developed to help achieve these goals.

For more information, contact us at cwse-cfsg@nserc-crsng.gc.ca.

Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering

The Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering Program (CWSE) was launched in 1996. Its goal is to increase the participation of women in science and engineering, and to provide role models for women active in, and considering, careers in these fields. The program is regionally based, with one Chair for each of the Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario, Prairie, and British Columbia/Yukon regions.

Learn about the current chairholders and their chair program.

Tamara Franz-Odendaal
Dr. Tamara Franz-Odendaal

Department of Biology
Mount Saint Vincent University
This link will take you to another Web site Chairholder Website


Ève Langelier
Dr. Eve Langelier

Department of Mechanical Engineering
Université de Sherbrooke
This link will take you to another Web site Chairholder Website


Catherine Mavriplis
Dr. Catherine Mavriplis

Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Ottawa
This link will take you to another Web site Chairholder Website


Annemieke Farenhorst
Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst

Department of Soil Science
University of Manitoba
This link will take you to another Web site Chairholder Website


Lesley Shannon
Dr. Lesley Shannon

School of Engineering Science
Simon Fraser University


Elizabeth Croft
Dr. Elizabeth Croft

Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of British Columbia
This link will take you to another Web site Chairholder Website


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With NSERC and industry partner support we've begun to STEM the tide of gender inequity in science, technology and engineering. Education has allowed us to reach parents, teachers and other influencers, helping empower girls to pursue STEM careers. But women still need your support. With information and inspiration the current gender gap will become a thing of the past!
NSERC's program for the Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering has enabled me and my team to reach thousands of women engineers and scientists to promote their work, support their advancement and celebrate diversity in our professional fields. With the help of our sponsor, Pratt & Whitney Canada, we have also worked on cultural diversity in engineering teams and grooming future women leaders in aerospace.
Almost everywhere we look in our natural world, we observe diversity. Perhaps that is why it feels so odd when diversity is absent in the workplace. Let us work to bring diversity to all sectors and layers of society so that we are in a better position to reshape our world to become a better place.
Thirty years ago, safety wasn't always a priority in industry.  When people realized there was a business case for safety, everything changed - it was all about a safety culture.  We know there is a strong business case for diversity in science and engineering.  It’s time to create change. We need a diversity culture.
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What's New

Scholarships and Fellowships Available

L’Oréal Canada For Women in Science

  • L’Oréal Canada, in collaboration with the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and NSERC, offers one $5,000 supplement to a woman scientist or engineer involved in promising research projects who has been awarded an NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship (PDF). For more information, please consult the program description.

  • L’Oréal Canada, with the support of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and in partnership with the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, offers two $20,000 This link will take you to another Web site Women in Science Research Excellence Fellowships to women postdoctoral fellows. The fellowships alternate each year between the fields of Life Sciences and Engineering/Pure and Applied Sciences.  

The Alice Wilson Award

  • This link will take you to another Web site The $1,000 award is given annually to three women of outstanding academic qualifications in the Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences or Science who are entering a career in research at the postdoctoral level. The recipient is chosen from the current year’s female winners of PDFs from the three granting Agencies - the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
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