Amanda Belding is completing her engineering physics degree, with a concentration in mechanical engineering, from the Ohio State University. Here she shares a little about her career and the inspiration behind it.
What is your specific area of STEM?
Engineering Physics/Mechanical Engineering
How would you explain your STEM field to young girls?
Engineering Physics is about a deeper understanding of the engineering disciple you choose to focus on. I focused on mechanical engineering, when I learned how to build and design moving structures that solve a problem. In engineering you learn the equations for building and designing parts, in engineering physics, you learn why those equations work. The fundamentals are taught and focused on so that you can apply them to any problem you face.
What traits might a child possess that may indicate an interest or aptitude for your STEM field?
Problem solving, puzzles, playing with legos, taking apart systems to try to figure out how they work, learning about cars or bikes and how they are built.
What did you know about your STEM field when you were a child?
I loved math, physics, and taking apart things when they broke to attempt to fix them. From that my parents and teachers suggested looking at engineering and I went to engineering camp to get a better idea of what each discipline had to offer.
Why did you choose your STEM field? Were you inspired by someone?
I choose mechanical engineering because I really liked car engines. I found them fascinating and I wanted to understand how they worked. As I went through courses though I became frustrated when teachers would just hand us equations and expect us to accept them so I added physics to my disciple to get a deeper, fundamental understanding.
What are some really cool things that people in your profession work on?
I work on many projects. Some of the really cool ones include: design test structures for research on quantum computing and design mechanical components that are being sent out into space to collect weather data.
What inspirational message would you give young girls to inspire them to pursue STEM?
Just because one person may think you aren't smart enough does not mean you need to give up. Having a big brain is only part of what makes a great engineer. The other half is being a hard and passionate worker. If you enjoy learning something, never stop.
Thank you for contributing, Amanda!
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