These recipients each demonstrated a sustained commitment to support of initiatives that enhance diversity and inclusion for the Cornell Engineering community. By acknowledging the recipients with this award, we exhibit our gratitude and appreciation of their invaluable contributions and the significant impact each has made within the College and beyond.
Zellman Warhaft Undergraduate Commitment to Diversity
Myles Cherebin ‘22, Electrical and Computer Engineering
Myles Cherebin has been a very active participant and leader in DPE initiatives from the day he first joined the Cornell Engineering community in the summer of 2018. As an avid volunteer and leader, he never fails to contribute his talents to support the DPE’s recruitment and retention initiatives, especially those that foster professional development and community building among undergraduates. He served as the Undergraduate Assistant for CU EMPower, DPE’s peer mentoring program, and has held several leadership positions in NSBE. He also works as a peer advisor in the Engineering Career Center and has spent countless hours helping students in achieving their professional goals.
Zellman Warhaft Graduate Commitment to Diversity
Jason Chang ‘22, Biomedical Engineering, PhD
Over their past five years at Cornell, Jason Chang has been an exemplary mentor, advocate, and agent of change. They led and engaged in a number of outreach efforts to empower gender minorities, first generation and low-income K-12 students. They mentored both undergraduate students starting in research and new graduate students transitioning to the Biomedical Engineering PhD program. In response to anti-Asian violence and anti-Black racism, they worked closely with faculty leadership, staff and peers to provide language and spaces for support. A nominator noted, “They are always looking to improve the experience of their peers, whether through speaking up about important diversity and inclusion issues in department forums or supporting peers on an individual basis.”
Zellman Warhaft Staff Commitment to Diversity
Marissa Porter, Graduate Field Assistant, Materials Science & Engineering Department
Marissa Porter excels in her role, as well as many additional endeavors related to improving the climate her department, college, and institution. In addition to her duties as GFA, she spearheaded the launch and development of Materials Science and Engineering’s Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Initiative. She conceived the group from the very beginning, working with and bridging the relationship between graduate students and departmental leadership. As a driving force within JEDI, she works collaboratively with other members to diversify the compositional makeup of the department’s student population by leading and supporting recruitment initiatives aimed at increasing Black, Hispanic and Indigenous students. Moreover, she aids the department’s accountability and retention efforts by helping to create transparency about department statistics, leading orientations, launching the JEDI website, and engaging in programming related to enhancing student mental health and belonging. A nominator shared that “she has been a pillar and continuous contributor to a large variety of JEDI activities”.
Beyond her JEDI work, she works extensively to support REACT, a start-up initiative that offers science education to community teachers. She also supports every student in the department by serving as a resource, supportive mentor, and listener. A student nominator remarked, “When she is in the room, I feel safer knowing I can speak my thoughts and someone will acknowledge them.”
Return to 2022 Annual Awards list