people-first engineering logo. It features two shapes connected by a ribbon signaling the facets of engineering education

People-first engineering helps make the world a better place by closing critical gaps and elevating all people. It’s a framework that requires just three things.  

But it requires all three.

Excellent engineering fundamentals

Convergence of

Equity-centered values & global worldviews

For our community, people-first is both a goal and a practice. What you do every day at Michigan Engineering—whether it’s learning, working, teaching or doing research—helps reimagine what the field of engineering can be and should be.

This semester, let’s keep the conversation going.

In fall 2022, over 900 students, faculty and staff shared what people-first engineering means to them. We are so grateful! Your feedback helps the entire Michigan Engineering community deepen our shared understanding of what it means to be a people-first engineer.

Join the list. Be the first to know about opportunities (not too many, don’t worry) to share your ideas and first-dibs access to updated people-first digital templates, backgrounds and merch.

Sign up for the people-first engineering updates and a chance to receive exclusive merch.  (You can opt out at any time.)

Need some inspiration?

See how our community is talking about
people-first engineering

Grace Hsia smiling

“You cannot innovate in a vacuum. That is not how the world works. The world needs innovators, students like those at the University of Michigan who will reach out and talk to the users who will have the courage to ask the hard questions, to learn how to build a better solution that will create real world impact. That’s what I see every day right here.”

Grace Hsia, BSE ’12, founder of Warmilu
Lola Eniola-Adefeso smiling in a portrait

“If we’re not looking broadly, we end up with blind spots that create situations where technology and products are not useful or do not work well for all people.”

Lola Eniola-Adefeso, Associate Dean for Graduate & Professional Education, professor of chemical engineering
Mariah Fiumara putting on safety glasses

Where we’ve really seen our students put people first is by learning that the only way to succeed is through engaging community members. For example, our project team MHealth Team Flow is working to create reusable period products for people in developing countries that meet their needs. So they talked with the community and learned about different cultural norms, available fabrics, and their varied levels of comfort with the topic. . . not only did they develop a new product, but they also addressed the challenge of teaching people to use it safely.

Mariah Fiumara, staff, Student Affairs Assistant Director

Before you go

Get new Michigan Engineering digital freebies

Get updated templates for your presentations, backgrounds for your devices and tools to
share our people-first approach at Michigan Engineering.

Device Backgrounds

people-first engineering cell phone backgrounds

Presentation Templates

people-first engineering powerpoint templates

Zoom Background

People-first engineering Zoom backgrounds

People-first engineering framework is part of Michigan Engineering’s Strategic Vision. Questions? Contact us.