Hosted by the Warren B. Nelms Institute for the Connected World, the first annual Women in IoT Workshop, “Leading through Change,” took place virtually on Monday, Oct. 12, via the Zoom videoconferencing platform. With a keynote speaker, panel discussions, and student poster sessions, the densely packed workshop was more like a mini-conference. More than 200 registrants were able to join from all over the world. Workshop co-chairs Janise McNair, Ph.D., My T. Thai, Ph.D., and the organizing committee, Damla Turgut, Ph.D., Tempestt Neal, Ph.D., and Liting Hu, Ph.D., worked tirelessly to:
…bring together women leaders from all sectors of IoT and students interested in the field of IoT to promote and enable the increased participation of women and to address the gender gap issue in the field.
After welcoming opening remarks from Dean Cammy R. Abernathy of the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering, the keynote presentation was delivered by Wendi Heinzelman, dean of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Rochester. In her talk, “Wireless Sensor Networks in the Age of Big Data,” Dr. Heinzelman spoke about the evolution of the foundational ideas surrounding the area of IoT, from wireless sensor networks, to artificial intelligence to machine learning concepts that date back to the 1950s. She emphasized the new frontiers in expansion, engineering integration with data science techniques, cross-discipline investigation, and engineering creativity. She finished her talk by inspiring the audience with stories from her personal journey to become a dean in engineering.