Girl Day is an annual celebration of women who’ve chosen engineering for their career. Engineering is a field thought to be primarily for male professionals who enjoy math and science, but women bring their own unique ideas and perspective to engineering.

“Women want to take care of others and make the world a nicer place,” Rene Franks, PE, said. “They may not realize engineering is a great way to tap into those feminine instincts.”

Sonia Samir, PE, said female students should be encouraged to participate in STEM programs. Exposure to these programs at an early age will encourage them to choose engineering as a prospective career.

“We need to ensure participation of young female students in STEM programs that will allow them to explore their potential and passion for problem solving and innovation,” Sonia said.

Rene said that in her 8 years with PSC her greatest accomplishments are seeing the results of problem-solving and innovative designs at work.

“I get satisfaction driving around and seeing well-designed, well-graded, well-drained, attractive street and sidewalk systems that I had an influence on,” she said. “Very few people will even recall that an early layout had some issues, which through collaboration within city review staff and design engineers, were resolved for the public’s very long term benefit. Good design of water and sewer systems is all hidden underground, so the public will never know that someone paid attention to getting the right infrastructure in place.

“An example of a more obvious accomplishment would be a channel lining project in Midland that corrected some overly steep and high side slopes that were caving in and threatening residences. We executed it with giant concrete modular blocks, that in a pinch a kid could climb. We waited a long time for the right solution to be available in order to avoid a vertical and more dangerous concrete wall.”

Sonia said her greatest accomplishment is her family and daughter.

“My daughter is only three and half years old,” she said. “Me and my husband both being civil engineers, we sure hope to influence her to follow our footsteps to choose STEM as a career.”

Read more about E Week and Girl Day on their website and read our other articles about Girl Day.