This is an exciting time for Latinos in the U.S. Latinas comprise almost 60 percent of the labor force and we’re making tremendous strides in the health and technological fields. Women like Dr. Ellen Ochoa who is leading innovation at NASA, and Diana Gomez, SHPE Foundation president and Management Committee Chairwomen, was just promoted as the highest ranking Latina engineer at Cal Trans, are setting the tone for Latinas. I am also proud to be a female CEO heading the largest Hispanic Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) organization in the nation, the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE).
In 2003, Latinas represented only 1 percent of employed scientists and engineers. However, SHPE is committed to seeing that number grow. In partnership with Intel Corporation and IBM, we developed a new program called the Latinas in STEM track to empower Latinas through mentorship, networking, career opportunities and a rigorous curriculum. In 2011, the SHPE National Conference hosted over 800 Latinas and participation in the Latinas in STEM track was highly successful. I believe that through Latina support programs, we are developing a world-class workforce to address the grand challenges of the 21st Century.
We are also engaging young Latinas through SHPE Foundation programs like WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) to encourage girls to choose careers in science and technology fields. From middle school through university and into career development, SHPE is poised to help open doors for both Latinas and Latinos in their academic and career endeavors.
As a woman, my mission is more than personal, it is my commitment to inspire and support Latinas to be innovative in their pursuit of being STEM leaders. I believe this is important not only for our Hispanic community, but to place our country as the top pacesetter in STEM. I invite you to join SHPE and participate in the Latinas in STEM Track at the SHPE National Conference 2012. The National Conference will take place in Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas November 14-18th. Your participation will help to make a difference for the future of our nation
The SHPE Conference is the major event for the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, Inc. and the largest technical and career conference for Hispanics in the country. Each year, the SHPE Conference attracts over 5,000 engineering professionals, students and corporate representatives. The conference is an opportunity for engineering companies and corporations to recruit top talent from SHPE membership. It also provides educational, technical and career opportunities for professional and student engineers. For information, visit: www.shpe.org