Updated: Nov 18, 2021
This is the father of all post. This is the direction I was looking for.
I just want to say a huge thank you to Pat. You are quite simply- the best.
p.s. I love you
I felt like I never had enough time. The clock kept ticking but nothing ever seemed to move.
I didn't have enough time. Time to go visit family, meet up with friends, grow a garden, hike a mountain, ride my bicycle. I never had enough time.
Where did it go?
I am not limited by the parameters of my mind or body. Anything I put my mind too, I am capable of achieving. It's so bold to say (who is this new me!?!). Believing in myself started with small steps. I didn't have a 4.0 in college (3.0 actually). I don't have any abnormal physical abilities (last place in JV cross country woot woot!) but what I have is determination.
It's taken me my whole life to understand, some natural talents are the ones you can't see on a score board or on a test exam.
My very first day of engineering school, the calculus professor stood in front of the class at the chalk board and said, "Look to your left. Good. Now look to your right. Excellent. The person next to you won't be here next semester. So you must decide now, is it you or is it him."
I hated that the professor said, "him" not "him or her" as if it was assumed that the women would be the first to go. I remembering looking at the boy next to me, and the stupid smirk on his face. That is when I decided I was going to be an engineer.
Sedona opened my heart up once again to the possibility potential adventures. I think the best adventures in life are the ones with uncertainties. Phoenix is where I made the decision and shared it with my loved ones that lived there, and my friends in Georgia. Yep! Phoenix and Georgia in the same week!
We parked the RV in Phoenix for a week and I was able to visit my family, and attend my friends wedding.
I met my friends Cullen and Kaitlyn in June of 2018. Cullen and I were in a group training program for Anheuser-Busch where we met several other recent grads from all over the states. Kaitlyn and Cullen met around that same time. A group of us from the training program would all hang out and go play sports, or go to dinner, or concerts. My Kansas outlook on life was blown away! 3 years later, we all reunited at Cullen and Kaitlyn's wedding. Its amazing to think back at the life we had together and how much we have grown sense then.
Recap of my Journey:
That boy who smirked at me, dropped out of engineering school after 2 years. I did it. I beat the odds. Not only that! I had the highest record paying salary post graduation for 2018 at $72,000.
**Here's some fun statistics about Kansas State University taken directly from their website and listed in a "Fact Book"
College of Engineering 2018:
Faculty Female 17.5%
Number of enrolled engineers- 3596
Number of graduated engineers- 694
Of the students enrolled in 2017, only 18% graduated with a degree in engineering in 2021. Fall of 2021, only 18% of those who graduated are female.
Isn't it fascinating how the the same percent of graduating females is only .5% away from the ratio between male and female faculty?!
In the workforce, only 13% of engineers are women and on average we make 10% less than our male coworkers! That's why I always share how much I make, so that other women know their worth and can make sure their salary is comparable.
I wasn't the smartest in college, but damnit I was determined. I went to tutoring 5 times a week until I learned how to learn. Once I did that, all my school work became easy.
I never saw myself as a statistic. I just wanted to punch that dumb boy in the face, and outlast him.
This is all great in theory. That is until I started working in a male dominated world. All those "dumb boy" characters, are now my bosses. And I don't like them, which is a problem, because they are in charge of my bonus, and my promotion.
**You know what they say, money is power and power is money. Boo.**
At what point do I stop and say, "you know what guys, I'm good."
I set out what I wanted to achieve and that was to prove to myself I am an engineer and I am just as good as a boy. Looking back at the statics, it literally blows my mind how visual women in STEM areas affect how we see the world.
After the wedding, I spent some quality time with my cousins Heather and her mom Angela. They are so loving and inviting. I just have the best time when I visit these gals. They have always supported me. And when I tell them the "crazy" things I am doing, they validate me.
I wouldn't have been able to go to Kaitlyn and Cullen's Wedding, or visit Heather and Angela if I were still working in Maine. And these memories are the best ones I have now.
During the phone call while I was being fired for my podcast, the HR said, "well hopefully this is something you can learn from and grow in the future." as if I did something wrong. I started laughing and said "okay bye"
I am taking this experience and I am growing. I know how to get a job, and how to move up in a manufacturing industry and its not hard or interest me. Now I am looking for a real challenge where I can grow as a person.
I know who was seeking me out to get me fired. I hate you, but also thank you. I would have stayed, and I would have achieved your company's vision. But your secrets are not mine to tell. I didn't tell them on my podcast and I won't tell them on my blog.
The real problem is that a company's fired me for freedom of expression and nobody stopped to think for themselves. You people, you are the problem with society.
I was fired for having a personality. And that is everything I stand for. I believe in equality, and diversity. Not the lame "We have a corporate initiative to hire more women." What company's are looking for is a model women that looks like the roll they want them to play.
Diversity is having equal gender representation and then having unique individuals that aren't the "status quo." Diversity is not a statistic, its a mind set.
We made it. We are in California. Pat and I have been on the road, planning each day the night before the next, knowing the end goal was California. I am where I want to be. I've always wanted to live in California.
Say what you want out loud and then go do it. Don't wait. When you are ready, you will know.
Until the next post.
See the series of pictures from this RV trip from Maine to California (9-23-2021 to 11-1-2021)