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(be)longing (u)ncertainty narratives of stanford engineering

from the editors why (be)longing (u)ncertainty?

Underrepresentation is a growing concern in

Our project theme — (be)longing

engineering today, and this lack in diversity

(u)ncertainty — is inspired by an article on

and its resulting biases not only discourage

“invisible innovators,” which proposes that

underrepresented individuals within the field,

the difficult upbringings of low-income and

but also prevent many from entering the field

first-generation students (which are often

in the first place. As a result, we’ve decided to

perceived as disadvantageous experiences)

create this Zine (a compilation of original

can actually serve as “funds of knowledge”

artwork or written pieces) centered on the

with immense potential utility as valuable

narratives of marginalized identities,

assets to their professional careers. This Zine

celebrating their diverse experiences and

is a collection of unique narratives, reflecting

perspectives as underrepresented members of

the lived experiences of our very own peers

the engineering community here at Stanford.

within the Stanford School of Engineering.


labels they/them, chemical engineering

dominoes she/her, computer science

functions of society she/her, management science & engineering

masculinity they/them, environmental engineering

fok foe he/him, engineering (undeclared)

reflection she/her, product design or mechanical engineering

03 04 05 06 07 08


white the only sight

male the typical tale

cis nothing amiss

straight it’s innate?

engineering only fitting

they are majoring in chemical engineering and are interested in researching ways to improve water treatment


a casual dismissal a throwaway joke an interrupted voice

a moment’s hesitation a downward glance a catch in the throat

an acknowledgement a fund of knowledge a word of solidarity

a moment of courage an internal strength a certainty of belonging

she is a senior majoring in computer science who is passionate about STEM education, diversity in tech, and puppy videos

functions of society #include <stanfordengineer> class Student { . . . } int privilege(Student x) { int privilege = x.privilegeScore; if(x.ethnicity != "white" && x.gender != "male" && x.socioEconomicStatus == "poor") privilege = privilege – 100; if(firstGeneration(x) == true || hasAssimilated(x) == false) privilege = privilege – 50; if(isIvyLeague( == false && isEngineering(x.major) == false) privilege = privilege – 50; return privilege; } int fundsOfKnowledge(Student x) { int funds = x.fundsOfKnowledge; if(x.socioEconomicStatus == "low income" && x.learningExperiences == "rich") funds = funds + 100; if(x.firstGeneration(x) == true || languagesAtHome >= 2) funds = funds + 50; if(x.passionForLearning == true) funds = funds + 50; return funds }

she is east & southeast asian and has a passion for design; she is majoring in management science & engineering

masculinity "I went through a break up yesterday so it's been pretty rough." "I'm sorry to hear that, man. You gotta go through a couple of girls before you find the right one."

"Are you seeing anyone right now?" "Yeah, for a couple of weeks now." "Oh cool, what's her name?"

"I bet girls love your height."

"What do you look for in a girl?"

they are a queer senior with an interest in environmental engineering

fok foe funds of knowledge funds of my upbringing funds of my pass-me-downs funds of my hours spent working instead of studying funds of my days where my dinner is sleep funds of my things being my things until they are no longer things funds of me being my parentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; source of English funds of me helping my parents pay the bills funds of my transient housing funds of my underfunded middle school funds of my underfunded neighborhood funds of my intergenerational trauma funds of my trauma for the consumption of privilege funds of my lack of funds funds of experiences

he is a first-generation sophomore majoring in engineering (undeclared) he loves rainy days, walks on the beach, and iced americanos.

reflection college: campuses bustling with new people, new hobbies, and new outlooks on life, and what people deem to be the best four years of one's life â&#x20AC;&#x201D; how can we play a part in this? It can be a nurturing haven for growing and learning; for you to meet new friends who bring out the best in you; for you to pursue the ideas that feed your soul; for you to confide in experts with all the worries in your life; for you to learn from your failures and for you to practice rebounding. For four short but memorable years, college protects us from the "real world" outside; from the unnerving permanency of catalogued mistakes; from the idea of "bad ideas" and discouraging that's impossible 's; from the realistic attitudes that settle in with adulthood; from the inability to be spontaneous and to challenge societal norms But what if it isn't a haven but instead a reflection of our world; of our society's lasting prejudices and prolonged inequity; of our society's vicious cycles of preâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;entitled opportunities; of our society's skewed views of superiority and inferiority; of our society's biased tunnel vision for STEM and CS; and of our society's blurred vision of marginalized peripheries?

â&#x20AC;&#x201D; how can we play a part in this?

she is a frosh planning to major in product design or mechanical engineering

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