In October, more than 50 JAG students attended the Women in STEM Career Day hosted by APS, one of our longstanding Employer Partners and donors. At the event, they learned about careers in technology, human resources, and wildlife preservation from presentations and a panel. Additionally, they engaged in hands-on activities such as flying a drone and a bucket truck demo.
“For the bucket trucks, I thought it was pretty cool that you could go on them and we got to see how the workers work and how far up they go,” said Coolidge junior Marisella Martinez. “The drone demonstrations were also cool because you could go pretty high with them, and then they also said that they used them for going down into the sewers to look at everything instead of having people go down there.”
The opening keynote from VP of Law Shirley Baum and the panel discussion were beneficial for our students as they explore their career options after graduation. Women on the panel discussed their experience of pursuing an untraditional career path and the advice they have for young professionals.
Some of the panelists who joined us for the Career Day included Caroline Vachon (Generation Plant Manager), Naomi Prieto (T&D Engineering and Design Manager), Tayla Beckham (Manager Resource Operations), Mary Anne Burdick (Business Unit Program Manager), and Amanda Hart (WRF Control Operator).
“College seems like a bumpy ride right now, and that is why I loved this field trip particularly because I got to speak with women who also struggled with what to major in college and I got to ask them questions…I got to know the answers to questions like how APS helps you with college and pays for it,” said Ruth, West Point JAG President. “Their internships are also already hands-on with the career that you want in their company, which I enjoyed learning about.”
Our students were appreciative of how interactive and informative the event was. Not only were they inspired by the women leaders of APS, but they also gained insight into the different fields available to them and their interests.
“My post-graduation plans are going to ASU for biomedical engineering which is such a passion that I want to look into because I want to go into the medical field for my career. I’m trying to be a thoracic surgeon when I grow up, so this is just all in my field and I’m excited and ready!” said West Point JAG senior Emily Jane Crawford.
“I never really thought about going into a STEM job, it was more traditional like a financial advisor or something along those lines, but I think after going to the Career Day, I might consider going into a STEM career,” said Coolidge JAG junior Gabriella Arevalos Valle.
Nyla Phillips, Vice President of Tonopah Valley JAG, also thought the career day was inspirational because she was able to see women excelling in nontraditional career paths and learn more about what it took to reach the leadership roles they have today.
“During that time, my confidence as a young lady and my self-esteem were really low, and to go to an all-women’s day APS event and learn about the jobs that women are taking really lifted up my spirit,” Phillips said. “I learned so much from hearing all these powerful and strong women speak, hearing their journey and hearing their process. It really helped me because I’m scared about what my future has to offer, but knowing there is going to be obstacles and we are going to get through it and stick together and lift each other up….I’m really thankful for the women’s day event.”