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Polytechnique Montréal - where 30.2% of graduates are women

April 29, 2021 - Source : NEWS
30,2% of women bachelor's degree graduates in 2020.

10 years ahead of Engineers Canada's goal of “30 in 30”, Polytechnique Montréal has just passed an important milestone - for the first time in its history, 30.2% of undergraduate engineering graduates were women in 2020.

While Québec and Canadian female engineer graduation averages hover around 21%, this breakthrough demonstrates that the national goal of increasing the rate of newly licensed women engineers to 30% by 2030 is indeed very achievable.

Women Bachelors percent

While women currently account for 15.3% of practicing engineers in Québec, and women represent 14% of engineers in Canada.

Engineers Canada, the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec, and many other notable organizations esteem that the 30% target is a first milestone to be reached in order to bring about a genuine paradigm shift, and contribute to the fundamental transformation of the profession's character.

Exceeding the 30% mark for women graduates is an important milestone for Polytechnique, and is the result of sustained efforts. For over 20 years, Polytechnique has multiplied awareness-raising initiatives in collaboration with stakeholders in the field, governments, and generous donors (companies, foundations, graduates, and friends of Polytechnique). These initiatives translate into science awareness-raising activities in classrooms, as well as science camps, mentoring programs, contests, workshops, lectures, scholarships, and profiles that highlight inspiring women role models actively achieving in careers in technology.

There are numerous elements to the achievement of this objective, including but not limited to an increase in the hiring of female professors, the creation of new programs (such as the bachelor's degree in biomedical engineering), and the increasingly widespread adoption across all programs of a sustainable engineering approach - a approach which resonates with women, where they feel they'll be able to acquire key skills to meet modern challenges.

“We believe it's essential for women to take their rightful place in engineering to contribute to the development and deployment of sustainable solutions to meet the challenges of our time. If a lack of female role models can explain this representation gap, the growing number of women graduates will help attract more young women to this career path,” notes Philippe A. Tanguy, President of Polytechnique Montréal.

“Congratulations to the students, faculty, and staff of Polytechnique Montréal on this historic achievement. Post-secondary institutions play an integral role in improving diversity, equity, and inclusion in engineering and helping us achieve “30 by 30”. We're encouraged by Polytechnique's impact in advancing gender equity and we are keen to learn from their example”, says Jean Boudreau, President, Engineers Canada.

“To fully serve the common good, engineering must rely on all available talent. Increased women's representation within the profession is essential to achieve this. As a partner of the 30 in 30 Initiative, the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec congratulates Polytechnique Montréal in reaching this important milestone in engineering's journey towards a more diversified and inclusive profession,” declares Kathy Baig, Polytechnique Montréal graduate and Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec President.

In this video, Polytechnique community members highlight the achievement of this historic milestone, and discuss the place of women in engineering:


Representatives from engineering, education, and politics have expressed their excitement about Polytechnique Montréal reaching the historic milestone of 30.2% women graduating at the bachelor’s-level.

View their testimonials

Polytechnique, proud supporter of the "30 in 30" objective

Polytechnique Montréal is part of a network of 51 organizations and institutions that support Engineers Canada's "30 in 30" goal.

Together, these Canadian engineering stakeholders are committed to investing in the creation and maintenance of programs and partnerships that lead to an improved experience for women in engineering, sharing and applying best practices, collecting data on the quantity of women in engineering in their fields, and implementing policies to increase the participation and retention of women engineers.

As a champion of the cause and representing Polytechnique in this endeavour, is Full Professor Annie Ross, from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and who is also Deputy Vice-Preisdent of Academic and Training, and Co-Chair of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Committee.

Thank you to the women of the bachelor's program Class of 2020, who permitted their graduation photos to be the used for this announcement: Alison, Alizée, Anamaria, Ariane, Bouchra, Caroline, Catherine, Chelsy, Cindy, Claudia, Daphné, Drossia, Eliane, Elorri, Fauve, Geneviève, Ibtissem, Jeanne, Justine, Katherine, Katherine, Katrine, Lana, Laurie-Anne, Layal, Léa, Leila, Maria José, Marie-Ève, Marie-Pier, Mariève, Marion, Mathilde, Michelle Alexandra, Nadine Armelle, Nanette, Pamela, Rose, Safaa, Sarah, Tessie, Yasmine et Ying Wen!

Thanks also goes to the
Fondation et Alumni de Polytechnique Montréal, the Comité de la Promotion 145 and to Service de photographie Patrick!

Suggested Reading

June 23, 2020

Polytechnique posts an enrolment increase and is on track to pass the 30% mark for female students, 10 years ahead of the Canadian target

September 25, 2019

Polytechnique Montréal is the first university in Canada to earn Parity Certification