I am pleased to announce that the WE Local Des Moines agenda is live!
WE Local is a scaled-down version of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) annual conference. Though it’s smaller, it offers a more intimate environment and still has the same offerings. From Keynote Speakers, career fair, breakout sessions to networking events, WE Local allows attendees to advance their education and careers. Whether you are an attendee, volunteer, speaker or partner, WE Local Des Moines has something for you!
Over the two-day conference on April 17-18, breakout sessions explore relevant topics such as Student Outreach, Organizational Development, Career Management, STEM Re-entry into the workforce after a break, Entrepreneurship, Women in Academia and SWE leadership. The breakout sessions are also segmented by target career level from student and entry-level to mid-career and executive professionals. This makes it easier for attendees to tailor their agenda to their interest and needs.
Some WE Local Des Moines session highlights include:
Student Outreach: “Make a Difference! Empower the (SWE) Next Generation” by Christina Aguirre
SWE identity happens when girls have positive and prolonged experiences with SWE members and the SWE community. The primary goals of the SWENext program are to establish a rich community experience, encourage SWE identity, and provide leadership training and college preparation to pre-college girls. During this workshop, Christina reviews how the SWENext program works, shares best practices, and explains how you can personally get involved to recruit, interact with, and inspire SWENexters, whether in Clubs or as individuals. Every participant will receive a tool kit full of resources to use either as an individual or as a SWE section. This session and kit will help create your next inspirational SWENext encounter.
Organizational Development: “Talent Strategy for (and by) Engineers” by Angel McMullen-Gunn
Join Angel and her colleagues as they explore strategic organizational talent planning by sharing their journey in launching four successful cohorts of a quality engineering rotational program, as well as adding a new quality internship and co-op program at Collins Aerospace. They will share the engineer’s perspective on Talent Identification, Retention and Growth, as well as Succession Planning, and how to utilize engineering knowledge to effectively plan a talent strategy for the next generation of engineers at work.
Career Management: Big Little Lies: Engineering Career Paths Nobody Tells You About by Rebecca Turner
At no point in Rebecca Turner’s ChemE undergraduate experience did she think that learning about batch and continuous reactors was preparation for a career in strategic account management. While she received job offers for traditional engineering positions, what she found interviewing for the sales engineering role were responsibilities, expectations, and opportunities that were a great fit for her technical skills and personality. This workshop explores diverse career paths available to engineers, including sales and marketing, management, human resources, technical training, and executive leadership.
Career management: Navigating the Career Jungle Gym by Cherra Meloy and Leah Stanley
In the words of Abraham Lincoln, “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” This workshop explores how individuals can take control of career discussions to create a desired path. Whether that path leads up a technical ladder or maneuvering a generalist jungle gym, this session will provide career planning tips and tools for building your career development muscles. A self-assessment tool will be provided, and you will be guided through understanding your strengths, strategies for networking, approaches for in-role growth, and a measure of comfort with varying levels of risk. This session applies to both individual contributors and managers looking to create collaborative career development plans.
Career Management: STEM Re-entry Work It! (Or Not) Life After Parental Leave by Stephanie Foege
Join Stephanie Foege for a discussion with engineers and mothers who have taken advantage of various work-life balance options available after parental leave. This panel discusses returning to work full time, choosing to take an extended leave of absence from the work force, or returning part time. Attendees can bring questions about the impact of these choices on home life, work life and career advancement. There is no one perfect answer, only the best solution for each individual family at any given time.
Entrepreneurship: From One of 100,000 to One of One by Stacy Delvecchio
Taking that leap from being in a big industrial giant, being one in a sea of many, to being out on your own in your own company of one, can be intimidating and rewarding. But how do you do this? Do you even have a good business model? And where do you go for advice? Join this session to hear how Stacey managed her own transition from “One of 100,00 to One of One”. While Stacey’ situation is unique to her, you’ll still be able to learn from her how she identified what was important to her when setting up her consulting business and how she went about making it happen.
Women in Academia: Maintain Your Sanity in Grad School by Zahra Davoudi
Most graduate students complain about the constant pressure of graduate school on their lives. Low student income, endless working hours, and frequent failures are likely to bring discouragement, which could potentially cause mental problems. As a graduate student, Zahra believes that using certain techniques to grant students work-life balance will hugely improve their life quality in and out of graduate school. Moreover, not only can health problems can be bypassed but students can enjoy their path while trying to reach their goal.
SWE Fellows Technical: Show-off your work! Using Augmented Reality Throughout the Design Process by Kelles Gordge
Augmented Reality (AR) technology allows us to view hardware designs as 3-dimensional holograms right in front of our very eyes. Three case studies will be used to illustrate how to incorporate AR throughout the design process, from early prototyping to communicating a final design. This technology makes displaying models on a computer screen a thing of the past. Displaying models in full-scale, real space that users can walk though adds a sense of depth and scale, increasing understanding and productivity for everyone involved.
The full conference agenda can be found here. Remember, early bird registration ends March 6th. Also be sure to register for the awards banquet while you are signing up!
If you have more questions, let me know and I hope you join me at WE Local Des Moines!