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On Tuesday, Feb 21, SMU held its eleventh annual networking event She Networks, She Wins, with about 65 guests in attendance. Collegiates socialized with engineering professionals and enjoyed refreshments before the panel talk began. The four panelists were Cindy Clingenpeel (VP, Hitachi Consulting), Ellen Dowd (Senior VP at Hitachi Consulting), Dr. Leslie Ledda (Director of Internal R&D at Raytheon), and Lauren Windsor (Intelligence Analyst at Lucid).

SMU SWE President Kelley Howey and Special Events Chair Marissa Dusek posed some really great questions around how changes in technology have affected the way we work, using our strengths to find our passions, and how to stand out from others, especially in large organizations. Dallas SWE President Shelley Stracener ended the meeting by inviting students to continue these important connections by attending upcoming Dallas SWE events and staying connected to professional organizations like SWE after graduation, no matter where they end up geographically.

There were many insightful quotes from each panelist, but here are a few gems that really stood out:

“Don’t try to represent all women or follow a script: being yourself brought you to where you are & it will carry you forward!” -Ellen Dowd

“Technology is great to connect us virtually but you have to build relationships and trust with people first.” -Cindy Clingenpeel

“Take advantage of opportunities to connect outside your immediate teammates to build an influential network of other engineers.” -Dr. Leslie Ledda

“Network outside of engineering groups too! Connecting with people with other interests will help you gain new perspectives.” -Lauren Windsor

Thanks to SMU SWE and their Faculty Advisor, Rachel Goodman, for continuing this successful Engineers Week tradition!

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