Evergreen Chemistry Faculty Dharshi Bopegedera Wins a 2022 Seattle Association for Women in Science Award

May 31, 2022
Dr. Dharshi Bopegedera

Seattle Association for Women in Science (AWIS) takes pride in recognizing particularly outstanding Washington women for their accomplishments in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).  We are pleased to recognize Dr. Dharshi Bopegedera, on the Chemistry Faculty at The Evergreen State College, as the 2022 recipient of the Seattle AWIS award for Excellence in STEM Education/Outreach. Dr. Bopegedera is very deserving of this award for her years of education innovation and inspiring mentoring and support for students at Evergreen and around the country.  

The Seattle AWIS awards program began in 2013 and has honored 22 women from industry, academia, and non-profit research organizations. The AWIS award winners are selected from nominations submitted from around the state. The selection committee, composed of professional women representing many fields of STEM, are tasked with selecting the category winners from women with amazing accomplishments and influence and who are held in high regard by their colleagues.   

Dr. Bopegedera has been a faculty member in chemistry at Evergreen since 1991. She is passionate about education inside and outside the classroom. In 2017, she published a chemistry workbook which furthered her interest in developing laboratory exercises and workshops to actively engage students in learning chemistry in classrooms. She also involves her students in outreach activities to teach science in the local community.

She received two previous teaching awards from Evergreen and she has served as the faculty advisor to Evergreen’s Chemistry Club since its inception in 2003 until 2019. Her favorite annual event is Career Day, which she initiated 17 years ago for the benefit of undergraduate students.

Dr. Bopegedera has been an active member and volunteer in the American Chemistry Society (ACS) at the national level and with the local Puget Sound Section. She has organized and hosted numerous ACS sponsored events at Evergreen. Dr. Bopegedera is a Councilor for the Puget Sound Section and she became a Career Consultant for national ACS in 2019, which has meant working one on one with students to assist them with career planning.  

Dr. Bopegedera was nominated for the AWIS award by ACS colleagues to recognize her leadership, tireless volunteering for over 25 years, her advocacy work on behalf of undergraduate education and educators, and her efforts to make science accessible to all students inside and outside the classroom.