Julie Liu


PhD Student in Structural Engineering

Oregon State University

Corvallis, OR

Built Environment Queer Project

"The more things you do that scare you, the more you will grow."

Q&A with Participant:

  1. Describe your current position.
  2. My research focuses on developing computer simulations of mass timber structures in fire in order to better understand their behavior and how we can design these structures for fire safety.

  3. What is your educational background?
  4. I got my undergraduate degree in physics from Grinnell College, and I am currently pursuing a PhD in civil engineering.

  5. What do you love about your career?
  6. I love that I get to work on a project that’s helping to create a safer, more sustainable built environment, with people who are determined to make it happen.

  7. Do you incorporate your queer identity in your career? How?
  8. I am active in the graduate student union as a member of their Pride Caucus, and I serve as an officer for the local chapter of Out in STEM, an organization for LGBTQ+ individuals in STEM disciplines.

  9. Have you ever had a negative experience in a professional environment that was related to your queer identity? How did you deal with it?
  10. When I entered the field of civil engineering, it was daunting to look around and not really see any signs of other LGBTQ+ people. I didn’t want future students to have the same experience, so I sought out other folks to start an Out in STEM chapter together. My adviser has also helped to connect me with queer professionals in the same field–which was how I learned about Qu-AKE and this project.

  11. What role has mentorship played in your career? Do you have a queer mentor?
  12. My mentors do incredible research and outreach, and I look to them for inspiration on how to be a better scientist and engineer. Although I have not yet had a mentor whom I know to be queer, I hope that one day I can be a queer mentor for someone else.

Follow our Participant in Social Media!

LinkedIn: @julie-liu2

Interesting in participating?

Please email us at BEQueer@qu-ake.org and we will send you instructions within 48 hours.

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