What do you do?
I am helping to lead a start-up company that is commercializing advances in rocket propulsion technology.
Why did you choose this field?
I loved science & math, but did not know much about engineering in high school. A college female came from the local university to talk to my physics class and showed a video on "What is Engineering". After watching that video, I knew that was I wanted to pursue. I actually majored in Biomedical Engineering, with the intent of going to medical school. But I ended up falling back on my engineering degree after I graduated (decided I didn't like sick people after all). I fortunately found a company that hired all different types of engineering degrees after I graduated. I've since worked in engineering test, fiber optic test, biotech, steel manufacturing & mechanical, and now aerospace. I also got my MBA in the middle of that. Having an engineering degree has provided a base for me to learn and expand into all different career fields.
What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?
I wish I knew earlier in my career how important networking and interacting with more experienced employees and mentors would help me in my career. Don't be afraid to go ask much more senior people for guidance and advice. They feel honored and it will help you out!
Why do you love working in STEM?
I get to build a company that enables things of the future. It's exciting every single day to see what our team is working toward.
Best advice for next generation?
Watch the TED talk by Regina Dugan "From Mach 20 Glider to Hummingbird Drone". It's super inspiring!
Inspo quote / fun fact / role model
“People Who Are Crazy Enough To Think They Can Change The World, Are The Ones Who Do.” – Rob Siltanen