Let’s Break Boundaries with SWE’s FY19 President Penny Wirsing

Penny Wirsing is the FY19 President of the Society of Women Engineers and her theme is "Let's Break Boundaries."
Let's Break Boundaries with SWE's FY19 President Penny Wirsing
Let's Break Boundaries with SWE's FY19 President Penny Wirsing
FY19 SWE President Penny Wirsing is breaking boundaries.

It’s July 1, and that means it’s the first day of the new fiscal year for SWE…and thus the first day of my term as SWE President! I’m so excited to be leading this group of incredible, dynamic, accomplished women, and I’m thrilled to have the chance to help to shape the future success of SWE, especially since SWE has been so important in my own success.

This year’s theme is Let’s Break Boundaries, and it’s a reflection of some of the boundaries I’ve broken in my career. From being the first person in my family to go to college, to helping establish my company’s first women’s interest network over 20 years ago, to helping implement the recent improvements in SWE’s volunteer leaders roles, I’ve gotten pretty comfortable breaking boundaries and making changes. And there are so many boundaries yet to be broken!

Here are some of the many boundaries SWE is breaking:

  • Membership now numbers over 40,000!
  • A growing SWENext program for our soon-to-be engineers: swenext
  • New cool SWE swag available on line at sweswag
  • An incredible STEM reentry program: irelaunch.com
  • A new easy-to-use association management system (AMS) and advanced learning center
  • Five successful WE Locals in the US

Speaking of WE Locals, we’re continuing to expand our global boundaries as well. I recently participated in the WE Local in Prague, Czech Republic, where approximately 250 women and men from all over Europe gathered for networking, professional development and exploring new job opportunities. I also attended a symposium in Changsha, China for a cross-cultural exchange of insights and ideas on cultivating greater participation of women in engineering (engineering-symposium-china). In both of these cases, it was incredible to see how SWE is respected, literally around the world, as a leader for women in engineering.

I hope to meet many of you in the coming year and learn what kind of boundaries you’re breaking!