Throughout Canadian universities, there is a staggering gender gap in the science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and computer science (STEM) fields.

The CWIC network promotes inclusivity, equity, and diversity in the chemical sciences across Canada by developing a community for women and minorities.

How We Inspire Change

“I feel that the entire process has been super positive as I have learned so much about what I hope to do in my last year. Furthermore, I feel that I have learned so many strategies in approaching/applying for research, coping with mental health, understanding what the “upper” academic environment is like…”

U of T WIC mentee

CWIC works for change by:

  • Creating mentor-mentee partnerships between women and other under represented groups (URG) in the chemical sciences.
    • Over the past two years, 60 mentors and 97 mentees have participated in this mentorship program.
  • Promoting, engaging with, and advocating for women in STEM fields in our universities.
  • Providing outreach to youth and the public.
  • Holding Leaders Overcoming Gender Inequality in Chemistry (LOGIC) retreats to provide professional development and networking opportunities to women and URG in the chemical sciences.
  • Creating a database of resources and contacts (especially influential leaders) to provide a structure for future growth.
  • Measuring impact through participant feedback surveys.

WIC Groups Across Canada

CWIC Leaders

Meet our executive board.

Anika Tarasewicz, Chief Executive Officer

Anika completed her B.Sc. at the University of Ottawa and currently is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto. Anika joined WICTO in September 2015 as the social media representative. During her time as social media representative, she expanded the group’s reach on social media, developed the Women of Influence series, and helped with several funding applications. The following two years (June 2016 – May 2018) Anika was Co-Chair of WICTO which allowed her to facilitate the creation of several new WICTO events and activities at the University of Toronto. Her proudest accomplishment was initiating the LOGIC retreat in May 2017 with a group of dedicated WICTO members.

Elaheh Khozeimeh Sarbisheh, Chief Finance Officer

Anika completed her B.Sc. at the University of Ottawa and currently is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto. Anika joined WICTO in September 2015 as the social media representative. During her time as social media representative, she expanded the group’s reach on social media, developed the Women of Influence series, and helped with several funding applications. The following two years (June 2016 – May 2018) Anika was Co-Chair of WICTO which allowed her to facilitate the creation of several new WICTO events and activities at the University of Toronto. Her proudest accomplishment was initiating the LOGIC retreat in May 2017 with a group of dedicated WICTO members.

Meagan Oakley, Chief Marketing Officer

Meagan was raised on the east coast of Canada and earned her B.Sc. at the University of Prince Edward Island. Her studies in computational chemistry continued at the University of Alberta where she is currently a PhD candidate. Meagan co-founded the UAlberta Working for Inclusivity in Chemistry group in April 2017 and hosted the Leaders Overcoming Gender Inequality in Chemistry (LOGIC) 2018 conference a year later. Outside the lab, she brews beer and bakes for her friends and family.

Nimrat Obhi, Chief Administrative Officer

Nim is originally from Ottawa and is currently a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto where she studies semiconducting polymers in the Seferos Group. She has been a proud member of WICTO since 2014 and has held positions as Events Coordinator, Co-Chair, and Seminar Series Coordinator. She is a current member of the CSC Working Group for Inclusivity, Diversity, and Equity (WIDE), and hopes to bring her commitment and passion for IDE to the CWIC team. In her spare time, Nim enjoys hiking, swimming, music, skiing, and is an avid cook.

Did You Know?

Numbers that are inspiring the creation of CWIC groups:

  • In 2013, women STEM graduates accounted for 16% of all university graduates aged 25-35, whereas men STEM graduates accounted for 36%.
  • Not only are women receiving fewer STEM undergraduate degrees than men, but in chemistry, this gap widens even further (36% to 26%) for women pursuing graduate studies.
  • Research has unequivocally demonstrated that diversity drives innovation.