Women in Engineering Compilation Volume 3: Books 9-12 is now available for $25 for members and $35 for non-members. Regular member and non-member prices for each of the four e-books are $7.99 and $9.99, respectively.
“All of our career paths are individual–but also–the same,” writes Karen S. Pedersen, P.E., 2016 IEEE-USA President-Elect, in the anthology foreword. “The women in these books explored opportunities and faced obstacles, and they had career decisions to make. Each of these engineers successfully maneuvered their career paths, turning those obstacles into opportunities.”
The authors of Books 9-12 are: Jill S. Tietjen, P.E., a Denver-based consultant; Jeewika Ranaweera, principal hardware engineer on the Advanced Technology Team at Oracle; Amy K. Jones, a senior systems engineer at John Deere; and Lisa Schoedel, litigation counsel for a Chicago law firm.
Tietjen’s book, Women in Engineering Book 9: Recognizing and Taking Advantage of Opportunities is a candid discussion of her experiences and growth. Her wide-ranging career has included positions with Duke Power Company, Mobile Oil Corporation’s Mining and Coal Division, and the University of Colorado at Boulder, as well as consultancies. When she wrote the WIE volume, Tietjen was serving as Chief Executive Officer of the National Women’s Hall of Fame. Throughout her narrative, the author reflects on her experiences, both professionally and personally, including how she gained greater confidence in making decisions. “Each of us has many choices to make daily,” she writes, “and if you don’t make those choices for yourself, someone else will make them for you.”
A chapter titled “Tietjen’s Tips” contains specific career advice that can be helpful in engineering or any other field. Among the topics, the author offers guidance on the importance of networking, learning when to say “yes” or “no,” and overcoming obstacles.
In Women in Engineering Book 10: My Three Journeys: Finding Professional and Personal Fulfillment as an Engineer, Jeewika Ranaweera relates how she traveled from her native Sri Lanka to Cuba, Canada, and finally, to the Silicon Valley. With intelligence and insight, Ranaweera recounts the nearly 15,000-mile route that took her to Cuba, where she studied at a respected technical university in Havana; to Canada, where she earned her Master’s and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Toronto; and ultimately, to Silicon Valley, where she is now settled. Throughout her narrative, the author reflects on what fed her desire to become an engineer, which she calls “one of the most fascinating jobs in the world.” She observes that her education, training and experiences have opened new doors for her. She writes, “I have learned to understand how things work, and then be able to improve or create better solutions.”
In Amy K. Jones’s book, Women in Engineering Book 11: Quietly, Clearly and authoritatively, the author manages to be inspirational, moving and humorous–sometimes, all at once. Jones relates her story through a series of occasionally unsettling but always memorable anecdotes about situations when she did–or did not–speak up. “Despite all the cringe-worthy moments,” she writes, “I believe my failures are the most vital to include,” and points out that “failure is a pathway to learning.” In a chapter about gender bias in the workplace, Jones discusses how she handles what she calls “benign gender discrimination”–such as being told to smile or having to announce that your engagement doesn’t mean you’re retiring. “You can choose to take the risks that come with speaking up and addressing the issue,” writes Jones. “It gets easier with practice, and is the only choice that leads to change.”
Her experiences while working closely with John Deere colleagues in China and India provide amusing, perceptive anecdotes. “Together,” she adds, “we have accomplished more than any single location could have done on our own, and the friendships we’ve built have enriched my life.”
In Lisa Schoedel’s volume, Women in Engineering Book 12: It’s Not a Career Path ” It’s an Obstacle Course!, the author recounts her career path, which cuts across three male-dominated industries: defense, oil and law. Today, as litigation counsel for a Chicago law firm, she uses her electronics and environmental engineering training and skills to advise attorneys. Her book reflects Schoedel’s pragmatism and sense of humor, and is filled with anecdotes that explain why she made many of her career choices, plus the lessons she learned along the way. In a chapter with the can’t-miss-it title, “How I Learned about Life at Gas Stations,” she recalls some of her most valuable encounters while visiting and auditing every Shell Oil gas station in a two-state area, twice a year. Schoedel’s insights, especially about being aware of your communication style, and never pre-judging other people by their appearance or formal education, are helpful advice for almost anyone either entering–or already part of–the work force.
IEEE-USA’s award-winning Women in Engineering series includes:
- Women in Engineering ” Book 1: Inspire and Close the Gender Gap, by L-3 Warrior Systems systems and software engineering manager and IEEE Women in Engineering International Past Chair Nita Patel;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 2: Passion, Perseverance and Making a Difference, by Microsoft data analyst/program manager Maria Vlachopoulou;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 3: Passions Can Sustain You: A Personal Career History, by consultant Sherry Gillespie;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 4: Follow Your Curiosities: Finding Success through Learning, by James Madison University assistant professor Jacquelyn Nagel;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 5: Finding Self and Growth, by Broadcom integrated circuits packaging engineer Melissa Lau;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 6: Your Career, My Career, by Austin consultant Leslie Martinich;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 7: Having It All, by Silicon Valley consultant Tanya Candia;
- Women in Engineering ” Book 8: The Art of Self-Empowerment, by Punam Nagpal of Cisco Corporate Quality.
- Women in Engineering ” Book 9: Recognizing & Taking Advantage of Opportunities, by consultant Jill S. Tietjen, P.E.
- Women in Engineering ” Book 10: My Three Journeys: Finding Professional and Personal Fulfillment as an Engineer, by Oracle principal hardware engineer Jeewicka Ranaweera.
- Women in Engineering ” Book 11: Quietly, Clearly and Authoritatively, by Amy K. Jones, a senior systems engineer at John Deere.
- Women in Engineering ” It’s Not a Career Path–It’s an Obstacle Course!, by Lisa Schoedel.
More information about all 12 books in this IEEE-USA Women in Engineering eBook series is available at http://shop.ieeeusa.org/.
Four more volumes in the series will be published in 2017.