Welcome to my new interview series featuring some of the brightest and most hard-working women I know. My goal for this series is to collect stories from women in all levels of their career. The hope is that their journey and their advice will trigger something in you, and help you take the jump you need to achieve your personal level of success. Whether they are freelancers, founders of their own business, corporate employees, or students, this #LadiesWhoHustle series will showcase their unique talents and help you unveil yours.
Based out of Portland, Oregon, Lindsey, the Engineeress, works as an engineer. She made an Instagram account in an effort to "peel back the curtain of women in engineering" and has since been providing insight and motivation through social media. Lindsey feels that if young women have role models to look up to and visualize, it will help them choose to embody those career paths in the future.
Read my interview with Lindsey to learn more about career and her efforts in creating awareness for women in engineering.
Lindsey, the Engineeress
I'm a materials engineer with a focus on electronic materials.
Why do you do what you do?
I originally picked up engineering in middle school when I realized I could be solving puzzles for a living. Materials engineering really stood out to me because of how intriguing it was that such fundamental (nano- and micro) levels of materials can impact the macro-scale properties.
What was your dream job at 10 years old?
I wanted to be an engineer since middle school. Before that, I think I wanted to be a lawyer until I found out lawyers had to read a lot and that I really struggled with spelling the word lawyer.
If you could have anyone's job in the world, whose job would you choose and why?
That's tough. I'm very happy with what I'm doing now. I wish I could be more influential to young girls.
What is one thing people outside of your industry get wrong about your job?
I don't design fashion. For some reason, when people hear materials, they think I must work in fashion.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Working my way up to a higher-level management position.
What has been your biggest career struggle so far?
My worst semester was Fall junior year. I distinctly remember during an 11am lecture I had to stand up in class to keep myself awake since I had been in the same building working since 8am the previous day. I repeat: I had to stand up in lecture to keep myself from falling asleep. At one point, I almost fell over. Knowing I could get through that though, meant I could get through anything else.
What has been your biggest career win to date?
I got a scholarship (including a living stipend) for my master's degree!
What's the best career advice you've received?
So much of your success won't be determined by your talents, but by how you leverage interpersonal skills. So true; you will not get very far with your head in the ground, especially when corporate life involves you working in a team.
What about the worst piece of advice you've received?
"Follow your heart". While I strongly agree that you should do things that you enjoy and be with people you enjoy, decisions should be made with intention. Be intentional, not impulsive. The better advice would be "listen to your heart".
What are you most proud of?
Defying my odds.
What motivates you the most?
I have a lot to prove. In my position, I'm undereducated and the only woman on my team. I plan to exceed those expectations and that's highly motivating.
What advice do you have for those looking for a career in your field?
Keep going. The education is challenging. You will struggle, but you will thrive.
When do you feel the most confident?
When I have a team of supportive women at my back. Also, when I'm right!
How do you relax?
On the couch, with chocolate. And Netflix.
Favourite way to sweat: sprint (running) workout.
Favourite book: Proof of Heaven, The Defining Decade and A Thousand Splendid Suns.
Morning bird or night owl? Night owl!
Favourite '90s jam: Say My Name by Destiny's Child.
Favourite city: New York.
Spirit animal: a panther.
Get in touch with Lindsey!
Know anyone that would be great to feature in the #LadiesWhoHustle series? Connect with me on Instagram to nominate them - or yourself!