Topics

women in engrg

John Griessen
 

On 6/6/20 8:09 PM, lilacbarn wrote:
What is it about electrical/electronic engineering that turns women off that as a career?
The Civils and Mechanicals seem to do far better at attracting women into the profession.
Geoff.
I saw a similar ratio in small company chip design in the early 90's. One woman circuit design engineer that was ex TI in a group of ten. When I was looking for work locally, not wanting to move in the 2000's I tried hanging out with the civil engineers with the idea of getting a PE license, but didn't connect really well with any of them. They seemed to wear more formal clothes, not be excited about any silicon valley news, happy to just use their "license to charge" for govt. required services and go along living their lives in comfort with ample money to spend on meeting fees, dinners, etc. Women seem to put other than self as top priority more, often prioritizing not moving, not upsetting their children's lives more, and that could explain how CE has so many. About mechanical, who knows?

John Ferguson
 

Look up Josephine (Josie) Webb.  EE graduate of Purdue circa 1940.  She's still with us at 100. Dad worked with her at Westinghouse in East Pittsburgh during the war. She was regarded as the sharpest engineer her section at the time.

But that was power engineering not RF.

On 6/6/20 10:26 PM, John Griessen wrote:
On 6/6/20 8:09 PM, lilacbarn wrote:
What is it about electrical/electronic engineering that turns women
off that as a career?
The Civils and Mechanicals seem to do far better at attracting women
into the profession.
Geoff.
I saw a similar ratio in small company chip design in the early 90's.  One woman circuit design engineer that was ex TI in a group of ten.  When I was looking for work locally, not wanting to move in the 2000's I tried hanging out with the civil engineers with the idea of getting a PE license, but didn't connect really well with any of them.  They seemed to wear more formal clothes, not be excited about any silicon valley news, happy to just use their "license to charge" for govt. required services and go along living their lives in comfort with ample money to spend on meeting fees, dinners, etc.  Women seem to put other than self as top priority more, often prioritizing not moving, not upsetting their children's lives more, and that could explain how CE has so many. About mechanical, who knows?

stevenhorii
 

This is a bit off-topic but the low proportion of women in engineering in
general has made professional societies to which I belong lexaminet the
question and have efforts at attracting more women. The IEEE membership is
about 8% women and 92% men. The International Society for Optics and
Photonics (SPIE) is a bit more balanced; in the US 20% of members are women
and 80% men (based on the SPIE annual salary survey which is sent out to
members). The Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine (SIIM) has a
percentage of women a bit higher than SPIE, though I have not seen the 2020
demographics (the annual meeting will be held as a virtual meeting later
this month).

I am a member of these organizations and I can tell you one thing I have
noticed. For SPIE and SIIM which tend to have engineers working on end-user
applications and research, the women I know in these organizations almost
all spent some of their undergraduate years in the usual "circuits and
systems" sorts of courses. Building analog circuits (filters, amplifiers,
etc) and digital ones. When they got to computer systems, it took hold of
many of them and they shifted from building logic circuits to writing code.
Some of them were pretty hard core logic designers "programming on the bare
metal" as is said. They routinely implemented image processing stuff in
FPLAs. Others code at a high level and write systems software (my wife, now
retired, is one of those - though she never took an EE course she wrote
very good code, far more efficient than my tendency to write brute-force
code.

A few biomed engineers in the group of women also - mostly with PhDs in
bioengineering or biophysics. In their early years, they did work in EE
applications, generally building servo systems for biofeedback control or
combining circuitry for low-level signal detection and amplification with
computer code for noise reduction and signal restoration. In common? They
started out like many EEs but tended to move into more direct applications
fields.

Some of you may have an opinion, but one I have heard from educators is
that, in the US, an unfortunately common thing is that women do well in
math up to a point (usually after algebra and geometry) and then they lose
interest. I certainly saw this in high school, though this was in the '60s
and I don't know if is still true.

Steve H.



On Sat, Jun 6, 2020 at 11:13 PM John Ferguson via groups.io <jferg977=
aol.com@groups.io> wrote:

Look up Josephine (Josie) Webb. EE graduate of Purdue circa 1940.
She's still with us at 100. Dad worked with her at Westinghouse in East
Pittsburgh during the war. She was regarded as the sharpest engineer her
section at the time.

But that was power engineering not RF.

On 6/6/20 10:26 PM, John Griessen wrote:
On 6/6/20 8:09 PM, lilacbarn wrote:
What is it about electrical/electronic engineering that turns women
off that as a career?
The Civils and Mechanicals seem to do far better at attracting women
into the profession.
Geoff.
I saw a similar ratio in small company chip design in the early 90's.
One woman circuit design engineer that was ex TI in a group of ten.
When I was looking for work locally, not wanting to move in the 2000's
I tried hanging out with the civil engineers with the idea of getting
a PE license, but didn't connect really well with any of them. They
seemed to wear more formal clothes, not be excited about any silicon
valley news, happy to just use their "license to charge" for govt.
required services and go along living their lives in comfort with
ample money to spend on meeting fees, dinners, etc. Women seem to put
other than self as top priority more, often prioritizing not moving,
not upsetting their children's lives more, and that could explain how
CE has so many. About mechanical, who knows?





Roy Thistle
 

On Sat, Jun 6, 2020 at 09:00 PM, stevenhorii wrote:


I have heard from educators is
that, in the US, an unfortunately common thing is that women do well in
math up to a point (usually after algebra and geometry) and then they lose
interest.
Hi All... not the usual TekScopes topic... but... well.. Research shows girls have an advantage over boys, until about the beginning of high school. Given that, the first thing to recognize is that talented mathematical ability is rare... the truly mathematically talented are on the extreme edge of the distribution of mathematical ability. The next thing to know is that research shows, men are more interested in things, and woman are more interested in people. On the average that difference in interests isn't much; but, there is a difference... and it matters in the following way. On the distribution's extreme end, where... say you have the talented engineering nerds... they are people interested in things... and quite good at things too... those among them that are men, will not show the same interest in people, than those among them that are women. In addition, many more woman in that group will show highly developed verbal skills... while the men will not. Thus it comes down to this: if you are an engenerd... and you are a man... you don't really have choice about where your talent will lead you... you will be with things. But, if you are an engenerd... and you are women... your talents may lead you away from things and towards people... and out of engineering altogether.

Clay Nicolsen
 

Interesting topic. I was about to start my senior year as a BSEE back around 1970 when the military thing got in the way. After three years away from "the calculus" I really didn't want to get back into the academics, but I've always stayed in the hobby.

My youngest daughter started college with a $90k scholarship in music and music theory, changed her mind, and ended up with a BSEE in BioE. During those courses, she took some ME stuff and fell in love with that. Ended up with a PhD in ME. When she was in high school I was "math Dad", but now she's into math so deep it makes my ears bleed.

The funny part is that she was always the "girly-girl", everything had to be pink, "My Little Pony", all her clothes had to match, and now she's doing heavy equipment and heavy trucking design and modeling for Navistar.

Ya just never know!