Mary Wells was just beginning her career when she heard the news on December 6, 1989 that 14 young women had been gunned down at Montreal’s Ecole Polytechnique.
In addition to being almost the same age as the victims, Wells, now Waterloo Engineering’s associate dean of outreach, had grown up in Montreal and had studied, like most of the victims, mechanical and materials engineering in the city. “It forever changed me and made me more of an advocate for women in engineering,” says Wells, who now leads several outreach programs designed to encourage girls to study engineering.
Wells spoke at a campus event on December 6 as part of the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. White ribbons are worn that day to show support for eradicating all gender violence.
“I think it’s very important to remember this day because it was such a profound event in engineering,” says Wells. “Young students today weren’t even alive when it happened.” [full article]