SWEet Wisdom August 2019

This month, three young women share their best tips and strategies for starting a new school year, project or challenge.
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Welcome to the SWEet Wisdom column! Each month we pose a question to an amazing group of women engineers in the Society of Women Engineers (SWE). They give you their best advice from their own experiences.

In August we asked the amazing and fascinating female engineers of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) to share their best tips and strategies for starting a new school year, project or challenge. Enjoy!

What are your best strategies and tips for starting a new school year, project, or challenge?


SWEet Wisdom August 2019 projectMadeline Dubelier

Cornell University class of 2020, Mechanical Engineering

First, identify what makes you feel confident. Whether it’s starting a fresh notebook or cleaning your workspace, take the first step to make sure you feel clear-headed and confident going into something new. Second, meet the people who are in your new classes or on your team. Get to know these people early on so that you can lean on them for help and ideas down the road. Work together; most things are easier in teams! Finally, have an open mind. While new experiences and meeting new people can be challenging and daunting, you will grow tremendously if you embrace it.

SWEet Wisdom August 2019 projectDenise Rizzo, PhD in Mechanical Engineering

Senior Research Mechanical Engineer at U.S. Army CCDC Ground Vehicle System Center

Pick one item at a time to focus on and give it your attention. Also, concentrate on the imminent task(s) related to the new school year or project. Looking too far in the future can quickly overwhelm you. Most importantly, know that as hard or uncomfortable that a new school year or project can be, it is an amazing opportunity to explore and learn. Plus, learning to cope with change is a skill that you will use throughout your entire career, so no matter the outcome, you are preparing for the future.

SWEet Wisdom August 2019 projectLisa Walkosz-Migliacio, B.S. & M.S. in Computer Science

Senior Software Engineer, Target

First, set time aside to make sure you have proper opportunities to do your new project. Learning new things will take time and if you have none, you are setting yourself up to have no chance of completing your new task. Try thinking about the goals you want to fulfill and what resources are available. Then, try to get ahead of it before you find yourself in the weeds.


Do you have a question for our women engineers at SWE? We’d love to hear from you! Send your questions to swenext@swe.org. We’ll answer you, and your question may become a future SWEet Wisdom column!

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