Women’s networking group started by TCOM leader earns national award

By Steven Bartolotta

Rita Web

In 2007, TCOM’s Dr. Rita Patterson and Dr. Jennifer Wayne, a professor at Virginia Tech, recognized the need for women in the field of bioengineering to meet together, network, mentor and increase the representation of women in the field.

Thus the ASME Bioengineering Women’s Network Group was born, and now it is being nationally recognized with the 2021 Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies Medal.

The formal presentation of the award will take place in November at the ASME Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition. The award comes with a $2,000 honorarium, a bronze medal and a certificate.

“I am very honored for our Women’s group to have received this award,” said Dr. Patterson, TCOM’s Associate Dean for Research. “This group formed out of a need to support and promote Biomedical engineering women who attend our annual summer meeting. We have created a robust networking and mentoring environment and, because of this group, I personally have met many great friends and colleagues through our activities.”

The ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers) Women’s Networking group met with a number of goals in mind and growing females in the profession was one of them. Since 2015, there has been a rise in women representation in the field of biomedical engineering.

The ASME Bioengineering Division has supported the annual Summer Bioengineering Conference now known as the Summer Biomechanics, Bioengineering, and Biotransport Conference (SB3C), in order to provide a forum for bioengineering researchers and educators to present and discuss current trends in bioengineering over a wide range of subtopics.

The Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies Medal was established in 2004 to recognize outstanding contributions by an individual, company, government entity, school or other organization toward developing and implementing practices, processes, programs that value, and strategically manage diversity and inclusiveness.

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