I am a Venezuelan woman of almost 40 years old from a very traditional family. In fact, I am the second female engineer in a huge extended family where most of the members are women, and most of them work on sales or are teachers/professors. I studied engineering mainly because of my good performance in mathematics and physics in School. That was due to the help of my uncle Argelica, a teacher of mathematics who made me love it. In addition, when I took the vocational tests in high school, computing and electronics engineering appeared as the most compatible professions for me. Based on that fact, after taking the test to get into engineering school, I decided to start studying computer engineering. Math and physics helped me to handle the first courses of calculus and electrical circuits, and I began to love structuring systems more than programming so I changed to electronics engineering. A few months after getting my degree I began working in the telecommunications industry, and it has been almost 16 years of working in the same area. I worked 10 of those years in operations, with job roles from switching engineer to supervisor. In the very beginning my family was worried about my need to work at night doing maintenance windows, and I worked in "on-call" support for many years; however, I loved my job and I persevered. I was capable of doing it as well as any other person. Working in maintenance field operations made me have to work at “unusual” times. However, my technical specialization allowed me to move to different cities in my country and also to go to Germany and Colombia for training. Now I have worked for 6 years in technical presales for a telecommunications provider. I made this change after getting a Magister (Masters) in Business Management - Marketing Management. In this position I work throughout all of Hispanic South America supporting the sales process. Since I am working multi-nationally I was able to move from Caracas to Buenos Aires, which has been a great personal goal. My job has been let me visit almost all of South America and parts of Central America, Sweden, Spain and the Netherlands. I get to learn about telecommunications in each country, with the valuable bonus of visiting amazing sites and getting involved in different cultures. Engineering has helped me to develop the life I dreamed of when I was a girl: learning, travelling, experiencing different cultures, and earning enough to be an independent woman.
The winners of the 2017 EngineerGirl Essay Contest have been announced! NAE President C. D. Mote, Jr. said, "Students’ devotion to protecting endangered animals is always inspiring to me, and their doing so through engineering, which is about solving problems of people and society, is doubly so. Congratulations to the winners!" Check out the link below to read the wonderful essays.