On April 20, 2016 the section of SWE at the University of Utah combined with the Women in Engineering student group on campus to put on an end-of-the-year social. This was our first event collaborating with this student group and we are excited to do more events with them in the next year. Because finals are quickly approaching, we had a relaxed night with food and a puppy to pet in order to help de-stress our members. The University of Utah SWE also raffled off national memberships, which is something we learned about from other SWE sections at the regional conference. Many more current and future members came than expected, which made us excited for our growing section, but warned us about our growing numbers for next year. It was a fun night to help our members get to know each other better and get new members more involved.
Engineers today have to work with people from all over the world. Graduating from college with an experience abroad can give you an advantage when working with diverse groups of people from all over the world. While a study abroad can be a great experience, it can also be hard to come by as an engineering student. With our schedules packed every semester with difficult classes, fitting in a study abroad can seem impossible, but there are ways to make it work.
One option is to do a study abroad over a fall or spring break. Faculty at your university may lead groups of students to foreign countries on trips over a fall or spring break. Even if the trip is not through your engineering department, it can still be a great experience no matter what you will be learning on the trip. As engineers, we need to know how to communicate and think globally. You can work on these skills no matter what subject you are studying while abroad.
Another option is to do a summer program. This will also not interfere with the typical fall, winter, and spring semesters when most of your classes are. The summer after Freshman year could be a good time if you haven’t gotten an internship quite yet. You could even go on a study abroad the summer before you start college, or the summer in between undergrad and grad school. There are many options both through your university and outside programs that partner with universities. You do not even need to be able to speak a foreign language. They have study abroad programs for beginning through advanced language learners, and programs in English.
A third option is to work out an exchange with another university that has engineering. This is easiest in your first few years. Your university would love to have you study abroad, and if you want to study engineering in another country, go talk to your study abroad office about arranging a partnership with a university that has the engineering classes you need to take.
A fourth option is to take a whole semester or year off to study abroad. Even though it may set your graduation back, it can still be worth it! Taking extra time in school to have experiences that you will never forget can be very rewarding.
So consider studying abroad as an engineer! Look at programs early in your college career and don’t forget to apply for scholarships.
Your society senate is working on wrapping up for the year. We are taking what we have discussed in our working groups and putting the information into transition documents that next year’s senators can use.
There is also going to be a committee forming that is focused on the governance updates. This committee gives senators from this year a chance to continue working on the governance reorganization even though they will not be a senator next year.
Head to this SWE website for more information and some videos discussing some of these changes: societyofwomenengineers.swe.org/swe-governance-update
You may also have received some emails regarding the new Association Management System (AMS). The system is now ready and will be a great tool for accessing member information. Don’t forget to set up your password for the system. Head to swe.org and go to login to access it.
We would love to have input from any collegiates on some of these upcoming changes. If you want to provide your input, you can always comment on the blog or reach out to your senator. Contact information for Carina Hahn, your senator, can be found on the blog.
The Senate also has an overall website where you can find information about the senate and much more. Check it out!
In February, SWE at the University of Utah held a social and general member meeting. We decided to combine the social and meeting so that we could give out important information in a fun an inviting atmosphere. It works to bring together students that are there to meet other women in engineering, with those that want to stay informed and involved.
Since it was in the middle of the semester, we decided that a focus on stress relief was a good theme. We made stress balls, colored, had snacks, and just hung out. If you are looking for a fun and easy activity at a social, we recommend making stress balls. They are really easy to make with just balloons and flour.
Overall we had a great event. We brought together long-time SWE members with new members who were looking for a good time. A stress relief social might be happening every semester for us now since this one was a success.
Twice a month CSUF SWE members get together and fundraise over $70 in just a few short hours. We’ve come up with a fun and easy way to make a few extra bucks by selling Costco Pizza. After putting our heads together and working out the logistics, we figured out that at $2 a slice we would make a profit of $14 dollars a pizza. To avoid dealing with too many left-overs we advise to start out small and buying no more than five pizzas and noting which topping sells the most. After two days of our “Recharge with Pizza” event, we noticed that six pizzas usually sell out in two to three hours with pepperoni being the top seller. Scheduling should not be a huge issue; due to its low maintenance manner, this event only requires two people to run, a food handler and cashier. So far, we’ve only sold pizza in our engineering quad but will soon expand our market pool to our main quad. In conclusion, we have found this to be a very simple and extremely profitable fundraising idea because it is well known scientific fact that no one loves pizza more than a broke, hungry college student.
Anxious high school students took over the CSUF campus on April 4, 2016 for “Cal State Fullerton Day.” Newly accepted seniors had the opportunity to explore the campus and speak directly to CSUF students and professors about the programs that they are interested in. Our SWE members took this opportunity to start recruiting for the upcoming Fall 2016 semester. We spoke to variety of students who are already enrolled in an engineering program at CSUF and others who are still deciding what campus best fit their needs. Parents and students both were very thankful for the information we were able to provide about student life, classes, and our overall college experience as female engineering students at CSUF. We hope to see all of the students we spoke to back on campus next fall.
CSUF’s College of Engineering and Computer Science hosted “ECS Tours” on March 11th, 2016, a day which over 150 middle school students were invited onto campus and learned about engineering. CSUF SWE happily agreed to participate. Our members were especially excited to showcase the projects that they are currently working on, such as a steel bridge, a water filtration system and a formula-style race car. The middle school students had a great learning experience and seemed to have a new and better understanding of what engineering is. We hopefully planted a seed of inspiration and will one day see them do great things in the engineering field.