Leading by example

Published: Aug 2, 2021 10:00 AM

By Lauren Winton

Cheryl Seals, the Charles W. Barkley Professor of Computer Science and Software Engineering, is all about making connections and building long-term relationships. Seals has helped many students find their place at Auburn. She has previously served as the interim director of the Engineering Academic Excellence Program and currently serves as the faculty advisor for the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and she is the faculty liaison for 100+ Women Strong. Her role as a faculty member and her strong advocacy for outreach has helped bolster the mission of 100+ Women Strong: to recruit, retain and reward women in engineering.

“The 100+ Women Strong Program has provided invaluable support for women in engineering,” Seals said. “Through their active participation in SWE alone, 100+ Women Strong has provided funding for students and mentoring. So many students have built connections and relationships with our 100+ Women Strong mentors and speakers. It is invaluable to their Auburn Engineering experience.”

The Society of Women Engineers and the 100+ Women Strong partnership is strong, something that is encouraging to Seals. Students meet with 100+ Women Strong members anywhere from two to four times a month. This partnership emboldens current Auburn Engineering students to find their footing at Auburn and helps to prepare them for the workforce.

“I really see 100+ Women Strong as the successful template for other universities to use,” Seals said. “It is an excellent program to help retain students and accelerate their trajectory as successful engineers.”

As a female faculty member in a male-dominated field, Seals herself serves as an inspiration to current and future students. Through her time at Auburn, and even before when she worked in the corporate world at IBM, Seals hopes that she can inspire others to follow in her footsteps.

“In engineering, it is my hope to be a role model for students who aspire to succeed in academia or industry with their engineering degrees. We do not have as many female faculty within the engineering field, and I hope that number continues to increase,” Seals said.

In the meantime, programs like 100+ Women Strong, which fall in line with the mission and vision of college leadership, will continue to encourage and embolden women in engineering.

“100+ Women Strong spread like wildfire and has grown tremendously,” Seals said. “The success of the program is very encouraging, and I hope more of our alumni catch the excitement and become members to grow the program, to make a difference and to impact more engineering students.”


Media Contact: Lauren Winton, lmw0090@auburn.edu, 334.844.5519
Cheryl Seals

Cheryl Seals

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