STEM Talk with Motorola's Women of the West

February 26, 2021
STEM Talk with Motorola's Women of the West

The SDSU Femineer and Women in Engineering Programs hosted the second STEM Talk of the semester on Friday, March 5, 2021 featuring a panel of Motorola Solutions Women of the West. This was the second event featuring the company, with a group of women specifically from the Women of the West employee resource group among the Motorola Solutions company, joining from various parts of the country.

The event began with a brief history of the partnership between the Femineer Program and the company, referring to an event held on Motorola’s San Diego campus for a group of Femineer middle and high school students from the Ramona school district. It was here where the first STEM Talk took place, that led to the current series that has been in place since summer 2019.

This was followed with Esmeralda Moreno-Thornton sharing extensive information regarding the company’s internship and post-graduation career opportunities. She broke down their three main services under their mission: Mission-Critical Communications, Video Security & Analytics, and Command Center Software, detailing the type of work an engineer would execute if working in the area. Closing with internships, Esmeralda shared that 52% of their interns in the last cycle were women and/or people of color, showing the company’s priority toward an equitable workforce.

Following the informational portion of the event, five female engineers from various parts of the country took time sharing their experiences; Nithya Kesavan, Angelique Sobingsobing, Georgia Younker, MaryAnne Vitulli, and Kanika Kohli. Similar to past STEM Talks, each engineer had a very different set of experiences that led them to Motorola Solutions. Notably, Georgia, a senior Systems Technologist, who was located in Texas during the STEM Talk, spoke in detail about her experiences, specifically not liking or being bored with positions she was working in. This led her to try a number of jobs until she found what she really loved, which led her to moving up in the company in something she was truly passionate about. Her message of not settling and taking a leap of faith to find your passion was inspiring and appropriate for the many students in the audience who are currently on the job hunt.

Another notable moment was when MaryAnne, a senior Systems Engineer, spoke of her experiences while working at the Motorola Solutions company. She explained that while working at Motorola she has had opportunities to grow and commented on the company’s support for employees. She shared with the audience that the Motorola Solutions company has the flexibility to allow her to take care of her family and get her work done at the same time. They have also allowed her to work on exciting projects in various parts of California. MaryAnne, as well as the other four panelists, spoke in detail about the work culture and environment at Motorola, giving the audience an idea of what working for Motorola Solutions could be like; a supportive, diverse company with opportunity for growth and flexibility. The STEM Talk concluded with a question and answer session and the panelists giving the audience of students their best advice.