By: Jessica Martin, SDSU Chapter Member
Meet Lindsey MacLeod, our Member Spotlight for the month of January! Lindsey is a second year San Diego State Chapter Member pursuing a degree in Mechanical Engineering with an emphasis in bioengineering. After graduating, she wants to use her knowledge to help people live healthier, happier lives. Her current career goal is to make prosthetics for children with disabilities.
Lindsey joined WSS because she wanted to get more involved on campus, and found a tight community of women who were dedicated to becoming the best versions of themselves. In addition to the positivity that comes from the atmosphere of the club, Lindsey also found a group of women who understood the strenuous workload that science classes can provide. Together, these two aspects have made Lindsey feel at home within the WSS community. She’s currently giving back to her WSS sisters as the Director of Public Relations on the SDSU Executive Board.
Lindsey chose to major in engineering because she has a passion for science and innovative technology. With her emphasis in bioengineering, she gets take biology classes as well as engineering classes, letting her pursue both interests and ultimately will allow her to apply biological concepts to engineering. Her favorite part about studying engineering is the creativity that comes with being an engineer: you get to not only identify but also solve problems that arise in the world all while bettering the quality of human life.
Lindsey is already working on innovations with the Quality of Life Plus Club at San Diego State. The organization is building a surfboard carrier for disabled surfers. The device has been made on engineering software, but the students in the club are assembling the actual product, which will allow surfers in wheelchairs to easily transfer themselves between a wheelchair and a surfboard.
Engineering is a branch of science that is notoriously dominated by men, and even though there are a lot of women in STEM at San Diego State, Lindsey often finds that there are only a few women in each of her classes and that they are usually much older than her. Even among Lindsey’s female engineering friends, none of them are Mechanical Engineering majors. Sometimes this makes it hard for Lindsey to make friends in her courses. However, surprisingly most of the discrimination that Lindsey expereinces comes from adults, as they often doubt her ability to excel and assume that she will change her major before graduating.
Lindsey’s advice to girls who want to pursue a career in engineering is to be ready to work a LOT, whether it be going to office hours or finishing a project. You have to be ready to work hard to excel even when everyone else is giving up, and everytime you doubt your ability to make it through remember what inspired you to pursue engineering in the first place and continue to push through.
Despite the fact that engineering is seems to be gaining female scientists a little slower than others, don’t be afraid to chase your dreams. Many young women are out there just like Lindsey, proving their ability to excel one class at a time, and moving towards making great strides for the future of the human race.