My name is Morgan and I am a senior in high school who is uncertain of her future career. There are so many choices and opportunities that it can become overwhelming. Over the past few years COVID has made many decisions or life choices that are delayed or put off and the world seems like a place that is far away and distant. However here I am, graduating in less than a year with the pressure of deciding on a career that I will embark on for most of my life.
While I have been interested in science and technology classes in school, I have never envisioned this as a career path for myself. I didn’t feel like I belonged in STEM or that a career in STEM was for me. Most of the people I know who are computer programmers or engineers are men and that doesn’t really appeal to me. I want to work with other women and share ideas on projects.
I had a wonderful opportunity to attend a #GirlsLeadSTEM event in L.A. focused around women in STEM careers. I was excited to see who these women are and learn about the exciting career paths they love. The event was a buzz with important people from across the country and was held at META. It was so cool to be around so many passionate people. I met Geena Davis, Miranda Cosgrove, Katya Echazarreta, and many other inspiring girls! I have watched Miranda Cosgrove on Mission Unstoppable and iCarly - so getting the opportunity to meet her was incredible, my ten year old self was freaking out. The best part of this event was listening to some very inspirational women speaking about choosing careers you are passionate about. How STEM careers are so varied and exciting, not boring like I have envisioned. Katya Echazarreta, the first Mexican-born woman in space, shared how passionate she was about becoming an electrical engineer since she was little. In her household her dream was not supported because it was not part of traditional family values. Instead of giving up she held onto her dreams, persevered and ended up going to space. Now she is working to bring space opportunities to Mexico for kids who aren’t aware that these opportunities or options are available to them. This showed me and everyone else that the struggle may have been hard but anything worth having, is worth the work.
When I was exiting the event I felt empowered. I got to see women of all ages speak about how it doesn't have to feel abnormal to be a woman in STEM. Going into the event I was lost in where I want to go in my future and coming out I’m still not completely sure, but I know my options are unlimited and if I want it, I can achieve it. This was proven to me by the inspirational women at the #GirlsLeadSTEM event.