Traveling time? 24 hours.
PSWE members? 13.
Planes & Airports? 3 each.
Layovers? 1 – that was 3 hours long.
An amazing four day adventure? Priceless.
From October 23rd to October 25th, 13 PSWE members traveled to Los Angeles, CA and participated in the Society of Women Engineers Annual Conference (WE ‘14). Held in conjunction with the International Conference of Women in Engineering and Science, it marked a momentous
occasion as a record setting 8,000 people attended this conference. All of the members networked with other collegiate and professional members from sections throughout the country. Members attended sessions about professional development, career-life balance, and career fairs. PSWE members also had the opportunity to meet with Purdue alumna and even Dean Jamieson, from Purdue’s College of Engineering. There was also some downtime where some PSWE had the opportunity to explore downtown Los Angeles, including LA Live.
I met up with some of the members who attended to let the PSWE community know about their experiences. They also have provided some advice for anyone who wants to attend a Regional or National conference in the future. The next upcoming conference will be at Notre Dame from March 6th-7th, 2015, and if you are interested in applying, click here.
“My favorite part of the conference was meeting all of the amazing people at the conference and being a part of a massive group of people in one location for one single cause. The energy at the conference was INSANE! My advice is to talk to everyone you can at the conference because you never know who you will meet and what impact they will have on you.”
“My favorite parts were attending Celebrate SWE! which is the last event of the weekend where we celebrate all the different accomplishments of the different sections. I also really enjoyed walking around LA and reconnecting with Purdue alumni that were at the conference. My advice would be to participate in Invent It Build It, which is this massive outreach event for over 600 girl scouts from the LA area. Also, take lots of pictures!”
“I really liked having the opportunity to network with other schools and see what types of events their SWE section puts on. I also enjoyed hearing from women in industry (mostly during the luncheons) about their experiences and recommendations to females in school who will eventually be moving out into the work force.I learned how to get along with different generations of people. Going into an operations/manufacturing role (hopefully) will challenge me to manga different age groups of people. I learned that respect and communication are key, and you have just as much to learn from an older generation as they do from you.”
“ One of the most beneficial sessions that I went to dealt with the most important things to do in the first 90 days of your job or internship. There were lots of helpful tips that I had not thought of before and can easily put into action at my next internship. I would tell PSWE attendees to take advantage of every opportunity possible! Sure, you may be tired from the traveling and long days, but it’s not every day that you get to attend such a large, inspirational, environment where you can learn so much. You never know who you could meet either, be it another peer from a fellow SWE section or an executive from your dream company! The possibilities are endless, and you were chosen to represent PSWE for a reason!”
“My favorite part of the weekend was being able to meet other SWE members from across the country. It was amazing to realize the support network available for female engineers. I had no idea how large SWE was outside of Purdue, and it was definitely bigger than I could image. Lastly, my advice be is to make the most out of your time there. There’s a lot going on so make sure to take advantage of everything being offered!”.
“My favorite part was spending time with all the PSWE members and getting to know them better. I learned a lot of great things.The two sessions that stood out the most were how to give and receive feedback and what to do on your first 90 days at work. Both of these gave advice as well as actual action plans to improve myself which was very helpful! To anyone going next year, definitely take advantage of the career fair and all of the great networking opportunities, you never know where one conversation can get you.”
“ My favorite parts of the conference were going to the job fair and speaking with representatives from companies that were passionate about their work and SWE. I also really enjoyed getting to know many other people from SWE from Purdue and throughout the country. The thing I learned most from the sessions was how to shift from blame when you fail and instead seek the root of the problem, take responsibility, and learn from that failure. That session also gave information about how to make yourself more resilient to failure and allowed me to view failure as a potential positive.”
“My favorite parts were Celebrate SWE and the dinner with Beth Holloway, the PSWE Adviser. I love seeing what other SWE sections have accomplished throughout the year and the keynote speaker is always so inspiring! What I learned from the sessions was how to incorporate global English into my presentations in order to communicate effectively to audiences from different nationalities. One tip I would give to the PSWE attendees for next year: Apply! It’s a lot of fun and a great way to meet other SWE members and alumni.”