Meet Yasmin, a Manufacturing Engineer Manager currently working at FMH Amtek in Irvine, California, making fuel and gas delivery lines for airplanes, helicopters, and rockets. Entranced watching shuttle launches as a child, Yasmin was so interested in space that her parents sent her and her brother to Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama, where she sharpened her skills, deepened her interest in STEM, and set herself on the path to a successful future career. After graduating from The University of Southern California with a BS in Mechanical Engineering, Yasmin began working in aerospace, gaining experience at companies that did final assembly for fighter jets and making subcomponents for aircraft and rockets such as flight decks, cabin windows, and mechanisms that move wings. Yasmin also holds a MS in Mechanical Engineering with an emphasis on Manufacturing from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Manufacturing Engineer (n) - an engineer focused on developing, operating, and maintaining manufacturing systems, who advises on best technologies and processes for factories and production
In her own words, Yasmin describes her chosen STEM career field as one that "figure[s] out how to bring the engineering drawings/blueprints to life, usually bringing multiple disciplines (Quality, Design, Operations, Supply Chain) together to define the best solution." She went on to say, "We're more like the engineers in Apollo 13, figuring out how to solve both immediate and long term build problems, than the women calculating trajectory paths in Hidden Figures."
Although seeing the products that she works on in the sky keep her excited about what she does, Yasmin says the field is not without its challenges. There's never a dull moment, she says, since every day is different: new problems to solve and sometimes quick turnaround and short deadlines. This can make it difficult to juggle priorities and complete projects on time. She admits it can be frustrating, but "you have to pick which goals are more important at that time - and they might be different tomorrow!" Counterbalancing the ever-changing tasks and time restraints, Yasmin's love for the variety that comes with her job shines through: "I'm never bored. From missing parts to tools that are out of calibration, to developing a process the site hasn't done before, we have to get creative on how to achieve the various, sometimes competing goals."
When asked what she would say to inspire young girls today to pursue a STEM degree program or future career, Yasmin said:
"Careers in STEM are creative. I think there is the idea that STEM jobs are only analytical and maybe even rigid and that is the opposite of my experience. There hasn't been a day that has gone by where I haven't used the creative side of my brain to define the build process for a product or to find a solution to a tricky assembly problem. We need all the diversity of thought in the STEM arena to develop solutions!"
In parting, Yasmin also shared something deeply significant and personal:
"I really want to get more people interested in Manufacturing Engineering, especially women. I'm now in a place to be able to actively include/hire women. I'm also a loud supporter of inclusivity, in all arenas. I believe for people to be able to perform their best, they need to feel comfortable bringing their whole self to work. I want to advocate for others how I would have loved to be advocated for in my past."
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