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Lesley Shannon, BC/Yukon





"The past three years have been such an incredible journey as the WWEST Chair. I am thankful to have worked with so many talented people from across the region in making WWEST a program that promotes the participation of more girls and women in STEM post-secondary studies and careers, while also challenging us to engage the broader community in conversations about diversity in engineering and science. We are looking forward to two more incredible years supporting the BC/Yukon Region."

- Dr. Lesley Shannon, NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering BC/Yukon Region


Westcoast Women in Engineering, Science and Tecnology


Inspiring Girls and Empowering Women

Westcoast Women in Engineering, Science and Technology (WWEST) is the operating name for the NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering for the BC/Yukon Region. Our mission is to engage industry, the community, and students to increase the awareness and participation of women and other under-represented groups in STEM fields of study and careers.

  • Creating Connections Conference: This biennial STEM conference covers topics on diversity and aims to engage meaningful dialogue about diversity in science, engineering, and technology disciplines. Creating Connections 5.0 was held on May 5–6, 2017 and had 238 attendees from across the region. Creating Connections 6.0 will be held on May 3–4, 2019.
  • WWEST Associate Chairs: WWEST Associate chairs, chosen by WWEST, will help create satellite programs in their communities to better serve the entire BC/Yukon Region. The first program of this kind is being established at Yukon College in Whitehorse, YT starting in January 2018.
  • Outreach Apps: The first of three such apps, Tune Twister is a free, open-source sound engineering desktop app which allows kids in grades 4–8 to learn about the science of sound by manipulating music tracks. Thanks to NSERC PromoScience funding, WWEST has partnered with Science AL!VE and Let’s Talk Science at Simon Fraser University to bring the app to aboriginal, rural, and inner-city youth.
  • Funding Partners Program: WWEST holds an annual funding competition for non-profit organizations and research groups in the BC/Yukon Region. The aim of this one-time funding is to help establish new programs and research projects that benefit diversity in STEM fields.

  • Best of the WWEST Podcast: Each episode of this series profiles a woman in STEM, with the goal of providing role models and discussing a breadth of STEM jobs. Episodes have been released every two weeks since April 2017. Episodes are available on all podcast platforms, as well as on the WWEST website, along with a full transcript.
  • Engendering Success in STEM: SSHRC has awarded $2.7 million over 7 years for this collaborative, multi-disciplinary research consortium. The goal is to understand and combat the various ways that cultural biases stand in the way of creating inclusive cultures for women and men in STEM. 

Thank you to our partners: Simon Fraser University, Bit Quill Technologies, and Orbital Technologies.



Through outreach and professional development activities, research, partnerships, thought leadership and online initiatives, we work with industry and academia to educate on the value of diversity for innovation, to inspire women to thrive and to celebrate the contributions of women in science and engineering.
For Inquiries :
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