The Fashionable Side of Science
What do you get when you combine a love for science, a love for fashion and a homemade 3D printer in a college apartment? Well, Sci Chic of course!
We're talking about engineering classmates, friends and entrepreneurs Erin Winick and Emily Huber from the University of Florida. Erin and Emily have a big passion for engineering and fashion, and they've found the intersection between the two, creating science inspired jewelry and accessories that they make right at home on the 3D printer that Emily made herself! Talk about innovation!
Erin and Emily's small business, Sci Chic, has a mission to show the world that the STEM fields are both beautiful and cool by offering jewelry and other products that represent different science topics. For example, Sci Chic offers a necklace that is based on the trajectory of the Apollo 11 moon mission. And, earrings that represent the phases of the moon. Other pieces represent science-related topics such as atoms, HTML code, suspension bridges and circuit boards. The creativity is endless!
But, it's not just about the intersection of science and fashion. Erin and Emily are highly involved in outreach initiatives, and some of their profits go toward supporting that. In particular, Erin and Emily produce videos that educate budding engineers on 3D printing and engineering as a topic of study.
"There's just so many things that you can do in 3D printing, and we want to make sure other people know what an awesome career path this can be," said Erin. "With 3D printing, the opportunities are endless!"
"SWE actually helped me find the major that I wanted to pursue in college and gave me the guidance to encourage me to stay in engineering," explains Erin. "More than anything SWE gave me the leadership experience and practice I needed to make me confident in my skills. SWE has also helped me grow my network to extend to areas all over the country. I have met people with various skill sets that have given me guidance and advice in starting my business that I would not have otherwise obtained."
So what does the future of Erin, Emily and Sci Chic look like? Well, there will be lots of 3D printing, but hopefully not forever out of their college apartment. The pair want to eventually mass produce their jewelry along with clothing and other items that are inspired by all things technology - while earning their degrees in mechanical and aerospace engineering. The pair also want to up their outreach game and keep producing educational material to showcase opportunities in 3D printing. And, last but not least, Erin and Emily want to spread the entrepreneurial love throughout SWE.
"In the future I hope to work within SWE to increase the entrepreneurial resources for SWE members and show that entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship are great career options that many do not consider," Erin said.
The Society of Women Engineers strives to provide the tools and support our members need to reach their fullest potential in their careers and their personal lives. Its stories like these that endorse this mission and give the society and its members the muse to keep being a role model, a support system and an inspiration.