Close your eyes and envision an engineer. The image that comes to mind is probably a man. I want to change that.
I am a #PSEGProud principal engineer. My journey started with my dad – my hero. An engineer himself, my dad never missed an opportunity to share his experiences with me and the satisfaction his work provided. From managing power stations and five underground coal mines in India to advocating the importance of safety, he opened my eyes to the fascinating world of electrical energy.
My dad never discouraged me from wanting to be an engineer. Not all girls who aspire to be engineers are fortunate to have a role model that encourages them to pursue their dream. I never missed an opportunity to visit dad’s power stations and mines every year during “Take Your Child to Work Day.” It quickly became obvious to me that the fascinating world of engineering was male dominated. As a student at NJIT, I was often the only female in the class. But, I wasn’t going to let that stop me, and I was determined to follow my passion and become an engineer.
Today, I am a proud NJIT alum and an engineer at PSE&G. I began my career helping design and build transmission power lines – projects aimed at improving electrical reliability. Now, I help maintain operational reliability and compliance with NERC standards. Helping to ensure that families and businesses have access to reliable power is what I always wanted to do, and, one reason, I am proud to work at PSEG.
Another reason I am proud to work here is the diversity among the engineers. The company values diversity and inclusion, and our employees work to ensure that we all feel valued – regardless of gender, ethnicity and other prejudices that exist. In fact, the fastest growing organization in the company – which manages billions of dollars in transmission projects – is led by a woman, Kim Hanemann, senior vice president for delivery projects and construction. A female engineer!
I feel a responsibility to encourage the next generation of girls – the engineers of tomorrow – not to allow prejudices to dictate their career choices. Women should not change their ambitions and personality based on what the community “expects” them to be. We need to bring awareness to boys and girls about how exciting science, technology, engineering and math can be and encourage them to pursue their aspirations.
Good engineers come in all genders, colors and races.
That’s why I am proud to say – #ILookLikeAnEngineer!
Please join me in supporting the #ILookLikeAnEngineer social media campaign to combat stereotypes. We want to show the world the diversity of individuals that work to improve our world in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.