Department of Biology
200 University Ave. W
Canada N2L 3G1
Phone: (519) 888-4567 ext. 32569
Fax: (519) 746-0614
An EDI committee in the Department of Biology will support and promote equity, diversity, inclusion in all areas of departmental life. A focus of the committee would be to advise the Department about strong EDI practices based on sound evidence, ensuring that practices remain current and continue to evolve over time. The role of the EDI committee is to promote EDI education by increasing awareness and visibility of EDI resources, while complementing University of Waterloo policies and practices with an EDI perspecitve. The role of the EDI committee does not include the handling of private or confidential information.
The Department's EDI committee consists of:
Committee Chair / EDI Representative: Dr. Laura Hug
Laura Hug (she/her) is the EDI Committee Chair and EDI Representative. Her duties include 1) establishing methods of assessing EDI in the Department including but not limited to hiring, awards, culture, practices, systems, working within existing University Policies and in collaboration with the Equity Office; 2) promoting awareness of EDI best practices in Department processes and activities; 3) conducting regular pulse checks (e.g., once or twice a year), and 4) supporting all other committee representatives as needed. Dr. Hug is an assistant professor in the Department of Biology where her research group focuses on microbial community diversity and function in contaminated sites. She teaches BIOL346: Microbial Ecology and Diversity, and BIOL645: Recent Advances in Microbial Ecology.
Internal/External Resources and Communications: April Wettig
April Wettig (she/her) is the EDI Internal/External resource and communication representative. Her duties include maintaining the Biology EDI website; establishing and updating EDI-related resource webpage; connecting all members of the department with resources and supports relationship building; advertising/promoting events and training. April is the Graduate Studies Administrative Coordinator in the Department of Biology.
Training and Events Coordinator: Dr. Okey Igboeli
Okey Igboeli is the EDI training and events coordinator. In this role, Dr. Igboeli helps facilitate activities that will help foster an EDI-positive environment for all primary stakeholders in the Biology Department. Dr. Igboeli is a Continuing Lecturer as well as the Director of the Science and Business Program. Prior to joining the Science and Business program, he founded and led the drug discovery company, True Spring Pharmaceuticals Inc. Dr. Igboeli teaches several Biology and Science and Business courses and facilitates the integration of Science and Business students’ experience with entrepreneurial activities on campus and in the community.
Graduate student representative: Karyn Robichaud
Karyn Robichaud (she/her) is the graduate student representative. As the graduate student representative, she brings the perspective of biology graduate students to the committee to foster inclusivity in the department that also benefits the unique experience of graduate students. She maintains connections to the Biology Graduate Student Association and helps create activities to increase EDI in the department. Karyn is a PhD student in the biology department, whose research focuses on understanding mechanisms that control mitochondrial activity in fish.
Undergraduate student representative: Samantha Ung
Samantha Ung (she/her) is the undergraduate student representative. As one of the BUGS (Biology Undergraduate Society) co-presidents and the biology undergraduate representative on the committee, she 1) proactively seeks out student opinions and experiences to bring to the discussion alongside her own; 2) promotes EDI awareness within the undergraduate community; 3) helps to plan, organize, and implement activities that work towards ensuring that the University of Waterloo is a welcoming place for all those who call it home. If you see her on campus, feel free to say hello! Samantha is currently in her third year of Honours Science, minoring in medical physiology.
Harvard test for implicit bias
Gender bias in writing calculator (for reference letters, etc.)
EDI resources from universities
Including EDI into research
The UW Writing and Communication Center has online asynchronous workshops including
- Writing and Articulating your Diversity Statement
- Statements of Positionality
10 tips for creating accessible course content
A list of UWaterloo inclusive washrooms (all are gender neutral, the list identifies washrooms that are accessible, contain sharps receptacles, showers, change tables, and bidet sprayers).
Right To Be - a non-profit offering training in preventing and responding to harassment, conflict de-escalation, and resilience.
How we can work towards reconciliation as scientists
A guide to Indigenous land acknowledgment - Native Governance Center
Interactive map: https://native-land.ca/
Examples of Verbal and Non-Verbal Microaggressions
Examples of Racial Microaggressions
Microresistance as a Way to Respond to Microaggressions - the OTFD and ACTION methods
Tool for interrupting microaggressions
UW Anti-Racism Resources
Do you have a question, issue or wish to suggest a topic? Please fill out the EDI comment form.