A Lifetime of Diversity: Challenges, Successes, and Rewards

Saturday, April 23, 2005 - 7:30pm - 8:30pm
Richard Tapia (Rice University)
In this motivational talk the speaker will describe formative interesting experiences, challenges and successes encountered along his life's journey from a childhood in the barrios of Los Angeles to a University Mathematics Professor, a President Clinton appointee to the National Science Board, and the first domestic born Latino elected to the prestigious National Academy of Engineering. A first-generation Mexican-American and a product of public education, Los Angeles City Schools and UCLA, the speaker's path reinforces the view that many paths lead to the same place. Discussion points will include
- Should race and ethnicity play a role in academic science, engineering , and mathematics? As underrepresented minorities are we round pegs in square holes; how much do we have to change to be academically successful? What are the extra dimensions that we bring to the table; are they embraced, appreciated, rewarded?