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July 2018

Dear 100+ Women Strong Members,

2018 Events

Fall New Student Welcome Event* Aug. 17: 100+ Women Strong Member Meeting Sept. 21: Making a Difference in Engineering at Auburn (MADE) high school girls recruiting event, Auburn University Student Center* Sept. 26:Auburn University Engineering and Technology Career Fair oct. 2: Auburn University American Society of Civil Engineers Career Fair oct. 20 (tentative): War Eagle BEST* dec. 1: Deadline for incoming freshmen to apply for 100+ WS scholarships at dec. 1-2 (tentative): South’s BEST Robotics Competition* Aug. 17:

2019 Events mar. 1:

Nominations due for 100+ WS:

• Leadership in Diversity Faculty/Staff Award • Study Abroad Awards • Leadership Awards

Nominations at

GEARSEF* Leadership Development Conference* (tbd) 100+ WS Member Meeting WIE Camp 100+ WS Luncheon*

We are still energized from the highly successful 2018 Leadership and Development Conference in April and as we head into the heat of the summer we are gathering feedback and ideas to ensure future conferences are even better. Thanks again to all of you who participated in the conference! Thanks also for your participation in the subcommittees: Recruit, Retain, and Reward. We know you’re pursuing many initiatives and we look forward to hearing about your progress during the next few months. We’ve recently redefined our collaboration with SWE and should be more closely connected as we move forward. Thanks to Samantha Scott, ’12 chemical engineering, the new 100+ Women Strong liaison with SWE, and Savannah Smith, recent Auburn SWE President and new 100+ Women Strong member, for making this happen. We expect several opportunities for future interactions with SWE and will keep you informed. We’re proud to report that we have rewarded Auburn women with $77,000 for the 201819 academic year for the following: Scholarships, Leadership Awards, Study Abroad, Graduate Fellowships, Undergraduate Research Fellowships, and Travel Fellowships. Your generous contributions are clearly making a difference. Another recent accomplishment is the Resume Book that has been developed and is provided to our Director Level Corporate sponsors. The 2018 resume book includes resumes of 307 female students and is providing valuable information for company recruiting. Our ongoing mentoring program is very active and we currently have 103 mentoring pairs. We’re always looking for additional mentors, so please volunteer if you can. Please mark your calendars and we hope to see you in Auburn at our next two large events: New Student Welcome Event on August 17, 2018 and MADE (Making a Difference in Engineering) Recruiting Event on September 21, 2018.

Mar. 6-7:(tentative): Apr. (tbd)



*Volunteer Opportunities for 100+ WS members

War Eagle! Natalie Mills and Olivia Owen Executive Committee Co-Chairs Olivia Owen ’77

Natalie Mills ’10

Civil Engineering

Civil Engineering

Member Happenings

’96 industrial engineering, was a guest speaker during the February 8 Emerge speaker series sponsored by Delta. Rachel Moss,

’77 civil engineering and 100+ Women Strong co-chair, was inducted into the State of Alabama Engineering Hall of Fame February 24, 2018. Olivia Owen,

was inducted in the chapter Honor Member of Chi Epsilon (Civil Engineering Honor Society) on April 12, 2018 Helen Adams-Morales

’86 chemical engineering, presented the keynote for the 100+ Women Strong Leadership and Development Conference on April 13, 2018. Linda DuCharme,

’06 electrical engineering, was profiled in the Spring 2018 Woman Engineer magazine. Holland recently led an all-male power restoration team from Alabama, Georgia and Florida Power to Puerto Rico. Carey Holland,

’81 industrial engineering, gave the keynote during the Auburn University Spring 2018 commencement ceremonies. Susan Story,

Member Spotlight: Susan Story

Since 2014, Susan Story has served as president and CEO of American Water Works, Inc., the largest publicly traded U.S. water and wastewater utility. Before that, she spent 31 years at Southern Company, where she served as CEO of Southern Company Services and CEO of Gulf Power Co. Story, a 1981 industrial engineering graduate, became an enthusiastic member of 100+ Women Strong member as soon as she learned about it. “I received material on the program from the university and just had to be a part of something so near and dear to my heart – supporting women in engineering,” Story said. Continuing to give back to Auburn University, the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering and 100+ Women Strong is high on her list of priorities.

’92, electrical engineering, was spotlighted along with 100+ Women Strong in Alabama Power’s March/April 2018 Powergrams magazine.

“As the first person on either side of my family to go to college, I am proof that the American dream is alive and well,” she said, adding that she’s honored to be one of only 23 female CEOs of S&P 500 companies.

’77 civil engineering has been selected to receive the Construction Industry Institute’s Carroll H. Dunn Award of Excellence.

“It’s an incredible story, and one that couldn’t happen in any other country,” she said. “And I started down the path of such a successful career with my education at Auburn in engineering.”

Jordan Ryle, ’18 mechanical engineering, and Savannah Smith ’18 mechanical engineering and

Early on, Story developed a love of math and science. She originally wanted to major in math. But something changed her mind.

Pam Boyd,

Melissa Brown Herkt,

SWE president, are the first two undergraduates to join 100+ Women Strong prior to graduation.

’12 chemical engineering, is the new 100+ WS liaison with the Auburn University Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Samantha Scott,

Sara Hough, ’03 chemical engineering and Melissa Herkt, ’77 civil engineering, co-presented

the 100+ Women Strong program with Margaret Arnold and Myra Girard at the Educational Development Forum, University of Washington, Seattle, WA on June 19, 2018. ’92 & 95 electrical engineering, will be the keynote speaker for the August 17 New Student Welcome Event. Paula Marino,

100+ Women Strong

was profiled in the Alabama Board for Engineers and Land Surveyors Newsletter.

“Then I heard about industrial engineering, and it sounded like a perfect way for me to use both my love of STEM as well as my love of people,” she said. It was a juggling act: Story had to work her way through school while balancing classes and taking part in the activities of the numerous associations, honorary societies and campus efforts with which she was involved. That dedication and hard work continued, and it has resulted in decades of achievement and in breaking ground for women engineers who would follow her into the field. “In 1960, when I was born, less than 1 percent of engineering grads were women,” Story said. “Today, 58 years later, it is still less than 20 percent, although overall women are well over 50 percent of all college graduates. “Getting an engineering degree guarantees a well-paying job that allows women to be independent and self-supportive,” Story said. “And for me, it has also been tremendously fulfilling. We need more women in every sector touched by STEM. We must be part of solving the world’s biggest challenges.”

Mentoring Update

The 100+ Women Strong Mentoring Program began in 2013 and has grown through the years to include junior, senior and graduate students mentoring freshmen and sophomore female engineering students, in addition to the traditional 100+ Women Strong member/student mentor/mentee relationship. The 2018 100+ WS mentoring program will add a new Mentoring Information Session for students interested in mentoring or being a mentee. Currently there are 103 mentor/mentee pairings. The Fall New Student Welcome retention event of August 17 is expected to generate a new wave of requests for mentor/mentee matches. On September 7, students participating and requesting to participate in the mentoring program will be asked to attend a 10 a.m. mentoring coffee or a noon mentoring lunch. Trace Matthews, Development Coordinator of the 100+ WS mentoring program (Samuel Ginn College of Engineering) and mentoring co-chairs Rachel Moss, ’96 industrial and systems, Jani Sarratt, ’13 industrial and systems and committee member Jackie Hundley ’74, computer science and software engineering will introduce both mentors and mentees to the wide range of configurations a mentoring relationship may take with respect to contact frequency and method of contact. Research by Jeffrey Fergus, Associate Dean of Program Assessment, has shown that students participating in the 100+ Women Strong mentoring program are 90 percent more likely to remain in engineering. 100+ Women Strong wishes to thank all members and students who have given your time to share your engineering insights with our AU women in engineering. New Sponsorship Level–Director

100+ Women Strong offers a new level of sponsorship – Director Sponsor, $25,000 annually. This level of sponsorship includes the benefits of all sponsorship levels in addition to the opportunity for a private presentation and networking event with students, access to a student resume book that is compiled early in the fall semester and recognition of an annual scholarship in the company’s name. Alabama Power and Southwire are the first corporations to support 100+ Women Strong at the Director Sponsorship level. Visionary Sponsors, $15,000 annually, enjoy all innovator sponsors benefits plus a seat on the 100+ WS Executive Committee and sponsor’s table and opportunity to lead a breakout session during the Spring Leadership and Development Conference. Visionary sponsors are Brasfield & Gorrie, Equifax, International Paper and Lockheed Martin. Innovator Sponsors, $5,000 annually, are invited to all events hosted by 100+ Women Strong, are recognized at program events, listed on event programs, listed on the corporate sponsor page of the website and listed in the Cupola Report, the college’s annual donor recognition publication. Innovator sponsors are Chevron and Figg. 100+ Women Strong extends a sincere thank you to each of our corporate sponsors for supporting 100+ Women Strong as we positively impact the recruitment, retention and rewarding of the female students of the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering.

Faculty spotlight: Selen Cremaschi Faculty spotlight: Selen Cremaschi

Selen Cremaschi, Redd Associate Professor in the department of chemical engineering, joined the Auburn University faculty in 2016, arriving from the University of Tulsa, where she was an associate professor of chemical engineering. Cremaschi, who grew up in Turkey and earned her undergraduate degree at Bogazici University in Istanbul, said she was immediately drawn to the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering on her first visit in 2015. “I was impressed with the dynamic faculty, depth and breadth of research work carried out in our institution, amazing detail and care that was shown by the staff during my visit and some interesting, intelligent and at times hard questions I was asked by the students,” she said. Cremaschi’s research interests are risk management, optimization, process synthesis and design and planning under uncertainty. In addition to numerous other honors she has garnered, Cremaschi received a National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (NSF CAREER) Award in 2011. Entering a STEM field was something of a given for her. Her specific choice of field, however, had a lot to do with being a woman. “My father is a mechanical engineer and my mother is a high school mathematics teacher,” she said. “I thought about mechanical engineering first, but the jobs for mechanical engineering in my country back home were really male-dominated, and for some reason in Turkey chemical engineering is seen as more appropriate for a female.” Her acumen in mathematics and chemistry landed her a spot in Turkey’s most prestigious chemical engineering department. Cremaschi said she is grateful for the female engineers who broke barriers in engineering. “I am from a generation that had to overcome limited roadblocks in my career because the women engineers that came before me paved the way,” she said. “These women worked, at times despite considerable backlash, side by side with their male counterparts, earned their respect and had to endure considerable hardship to be accepted as equals by their male colleagues. “I also believe that they not only in the workplace, but also in their homes, paved the way for women engineers, where their significant others learned to help them in the house,” Cremashi said of her predecessors. “Their children grew up with two working parents and learned the importance of it. “Although we have made great strides as women engineers, there are still hurdles we need to overcome,” she said. “I believe women engineers are role models and with involvement in programs like 100+ Women Strong will promote the awareness and participation of women in engineering by positive reinforcement in their abilities throughout the mentor-mentee interactions.”

Mentor-Mentee Spotlight: Katie Spinks and Lauren Moorer

Katie Spinks and Lauren Moorer live about 1,700 miles apart, and they have never met face-to-face. But now that they’re linked by 100+ Women Strong’s mentoring program, they’re far from strangers.

katie spinks mentor

Spinks, the area sales manager for the U.S. West Region at ExxonMobil Fuels & Lubricants, earned her bachelor’s degree in industrial and systems engineering in 2008. Moorer, a senior in mechanical engineering at Auburn, is working on a distribution coop with Alabama Power Co. Despite the physical distance, Moorer knows that Spinks, her mentor, is just an email or phone call away. Having that support has made all the difference, she said.

“I always walk away knowing more than I did before and feeling more confident in my abilities to succeed,” Moorer said of her long-distance mentoring sessions with Lauren Moorer Mentee Spinks. She said a strong connection to a successful female engineer fuels her determination as she prepares to enter a male-dominated field. “Having Katie as a mentor through 100+ Women Strong has been a defining aspect in my success here at Auburn,” Moorer said. Both women say a crucial moment in their mentorship came when Moorer, who had transferred to Auburn after two years at a community college, found herself working in a co-op that wasn’t a good fit for her. As a result, she had begun to believe she didn’t belong in engineering. Because she had yet to form any close relationships with her peers, she felt not only stuck, but alone.

“I would get home from work, hit the gym and each night research other majors to switch to,” she said. But one evening she got a call from Spinks. The two talked for more than an hour, examining ways for Moorer to remain on the road to an engineering degree. That call led to a meaningful interaction and a change in direction for Moorer. “I encouraged her to find something else and not go back for another rotation there,” Spinks said. “My outside perspective helped her feel free to make a hard choice. She’s gotten a co-op she loves, and that makes me so happy.” Moorer reflects on that long conversation at times. “It’s crazy to look back at that moment as I prepare to enter into my final year in mechanical engineering,” she said. “It’s very rare to find a person that genuinely listens to your concerns and gives the advice that you may not want to hear, but that you need to hear.” Mentors reap rewards, also. “Being a mentor keeps you young and keeps your own college experience fresh,” said Spinks, who uses her company’s three-to-one educational giving match to donate to 100+ Women Strong. “My Auburn Engineering degree has opened so many great doors for me, and I want more women at Auburn to get those opportunities.” Moorer plans to become a 100+ Women Strong mentor in the near future. “This journey of propelling toward my goals at Auburn has been a huge game of trial-and-error for me. I would never trade my journey for the world, seeing as even a few of my setbacks have led me to success along the way,” Moorer said. “My passion has always been to share the knowledge that I have gained throughout my educational career with incoming students following a similar path as me, so that they can learn from my journey and experiences and seek out the resources that are available to them.”

Auburn Engineering 100+ Women Strong July 2018 Newsletter  
Auburn Engineering 100+ Women Strong July 2018 Newsletter