Category Archives: Women In Engineering

MCWT Seeks Nominations for Leading Women in IT

DETROIT — The Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation is seeking nominations for its second annual Woman of the Year in Technology award. The nonprofit organization will recognize a woman in Michigan leading or driving change for women in information technology careers or fields of study.

Continue reading MCWT Seeks Nominations for Leading Women in IT

MCWT Hits $1M Mark In Scholarships For Women In Tech

DETROIT — Eleven technology-oriented women received scholarships at a Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation event on June 20 in Birmingham. The women are pursuing degrees that will prepare them for future careers in areas such as cyber security, machine learning, software engineering and bioinformatics.

Over the past 12 years, the nonprofit has awarded nearly $1,033,000 to fuel the educational pursuits of 135 of the state’s future technology talent. A strong network of partner companies who support a diverse IT industry in Michigan makes the program possible.

“If I can put aside financial concerns, I intend to focus on volunteering in student outreach programs to enable other girls in Michigan to take more interest in technology-related fields,” said Shazeen Biviji, who plans to study computer engineering at the University of Michigan. “By partaking in more MCWT activities, I can hone my skills as an engineer, make lasting connections with others, and encourage younger girls to develop an interest in coding.”

MCWT’s 2017 scholarship recipients include:

  • Friends of MCWT Foundation Scholarship: Allison Hurley and Ashley Risinger
  • MCWT Lifetime Achievement Scholarship: Saika Islam
  • MCWT Scholarship: Nouralhouda Baalwi, Eleanor Epskamp-Hunt, Renee Paniccia, Ayah Awadallah, Shazeen Biviji, Khansa Alhaidi and Dejamaree Davis

Breanna Howey, Alhaidi, Awadallah, and Davis received laptop scholarships.

“Computer science is a crucial building block of today’s world of technology,” said Islam, a future University of Michigan student who realized she wanted to study coding and computer science during the MCWT-sponsored Girls are IT! program. “I’m amazed by how a few simple lines of code can lead to the creation of some of the world’s most powerful machines. I want to be a part of this extraordinary process. I want to change the world through my keystrokes, as well.”

Scholarship donors this year included MCWT partners Continental, Consumers Energy, Credit Acceptance, Dell, Oracle and NiTS Solutions.

“Surpassing the $1 million mark in scholarships is a big milestone for MCWT,” said Carey Pachla, president of the Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation. “It’s an example of our mission in action – inspiring and growing women in technology – and the power of bringing together businesses and academic leaders to promote the pursuit of meaningful and rewarding technology careers. Diversity in IT will continue to strengthen Michigan’s economy.”

MCWT’s efforts to inspire and grow women in technology in Michigan are fueled in part by 90 partners who provide scholarships, event support and Foundation programming throughout the year. Diamond elite, diamond, emerald, platinum, gold and bronze partners include: Ford Motor Co., General Motors, FCA US LLC, Ally, AT&T, Cisco, Dow, Epitec Inc., Fujitsu, IBM, STG, Accenture, Credit Acceptance, Consumers Energy, Covisint, Executive Search Partners,  Fast Switch Ltd., Intel, NetApp, NiTS, Nutanix, TD Ameritrade, VMWare, Blue Care Network, Deloitte, Delphi, Dynatrace, KLA Laboratories, Lawrence Technological University, Meijer, Mercedes Benz Financial Services, Oracle, Quicken Loans, University of Detroit-Mercy, University of Michigan-Dearborn, Vertiv, Wayne Country Community College District, Wayne State University, Access, Acro, Amway, AppDynamics, CA, Chrysalis, Comerica, Commercial Progression, Dell, EMC, GTB, Harman, HP, HMG Strategy, Information Builders, Meta7, Microsoft, New Horizons, Okta, Ost, Plante Moran, Pega Systems, Ricoh, RSA, Secure 24, SIM, TEKsystems, Whirlpool, AMI Strategies, Career Builder, Cherwell, Cognizant, Continental, Davenport University, Gordon Food Service, Grand Circus, Henry Ford Health System, JDM, Lightower Fiber Networks, Netlink, OnStar, OpTech, Randstad, Red Level, Saginaw Valley State University, Softura, Spectrum Health, Thirdware, V2Soft, We Build Character, Web Savvy Marketing, and ZF TRW.

MCWT supporters also contribute to scholarships through Friends of MCWT.

The Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation strives to inspire and grow women in technology fields, aspiring to make Michigan the No. 1 state for women in technology. The organization supports Michigan’s female IT workforce, students, corporate partners, schools and the overall community with programming, scholarships, networking, learning, mentoring, and technology experiences. Find more information at and connect via LinkedIn and Facebook.

Solar energy jobs in Michigan jump 48% in 2016

LANSING – The Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council, a trade association for renewable energy companies, announced Monday that a new report from the Solar Foundation found that jobs in Michigan’s solar industry jumped by an impressive 48 percent from 2015 to 2016.

During that time, Michigan solar companies added more than 1,300 jobs, for a total Michigan solar workforce of 4,118.

This positions Michigan second in the Midwest both in terms of growth rate and number of individuals employed in the solar industry, Nationally, Michigan now ranks 15th in the number of solar jobs, up three spots since 2015. (Ohio leads the Great Lakes are with 5,831 solar jobs, and employment grew there 21 percent in 2016. Indiana had the fastest growth rate, 72 percent, but has the smallest number of solar jobs in the region, 2,700.)

Nationally, the Solar Jobs Census 2016 reported that solar employment has nearly tripled since 2010 and was up 25 percent over 2015, with the industry adding more than 21,000 jobs in 2015 for a total of more than 260,000 solar workers nationally. This is the fourth consecutive year of more than 20 percent national solar job growth. Last year, one out of every 50 jobs created in the United States was in the solar industry. Notably, solar now employs twice as many people as the entire U.S. coal industry, and the same number as work in natural gas.

The Michigan EIBC represents companies across the full range of the advanced energy sector, including advanced materials, biomass and biofuels, energy efficiency, energy storage, lighting, smart grid, solar, transportation, and wind.

More at

COMPES Sets Professional Development Conference May 20

SOUTHFIELD — The Coalition of Minority Professional Engineering Societieis will hold its annual COMPES Professional Development Conference Saturday, May 20 at Ford Motor Co.’s Powertrain Engineering, Driveline and Manufacturing building, 29500 Plymouth Road in Livonia.

The theme of this year’s event is “Self-Driven Success.”

The event is presented by COMPES, made up of the Society of Women Engineers, the National Society of Black Engineers, and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers.

More information about COMPES’ members is available at,, or

Michigan Council of Women In Technology Foundation Expands to Grand Rapids

DETROIT  —  The Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation has recently expanded, developing a West Michigan presence to further its mission to inspire and grow women in technology throughout the state. Four sponsors – Meijer, Open Systems Technologies, Gordon Food Services and Spectrum Health – have now joined the nonprofit from Michigan’s west side, to contribute to furthering the cause of diversification in the STEM field.

“To realize our vision of becoming the No. 1 state for women in technology, we need to expand our membership beyond our metro Detroit core,” said MCWT President Cindy Warner. “An enthusiastic, dedicated volunteer base mobilized to bring important professional development events and a selection of MCWT’s K-16 programming to the Grand Rapids region.”

Continue reading Michigan Council of Women In Technology Foundation Expands to Grand Rapids

MCWT Seeks Nominations for Leading Women in IT

DETROIT – The Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation is seeking nominations for its inaugural MCWT Woman of the Year in Technology award, to be presented at the organization’s Signature Gala Nov. 5 at Motor City Casino’s Sound Board theater.

The nonprofit organization will recognize a woman in Michigan leading or driving change for women in information technology careers or fields of study.

Continue reading MCWT Seeks Nominations for Leading Women in IT

Women Get First Hand Look At Auto Industry

HOUGHTON — When Jennifer Shute and Jody Hand took leadership roles in Michigan Technological University’s inaugural Women in Automotive Engineering (WIAE) program in July, one of their goals was to provide young women with something they didn’t have when they were students at Michigan Technological University — female role models in the automotive industry.

Women in Automotive Engineering, sponsored by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), was conducted by Tech’s Center for Pre-college Outreach as part of the Summer Youth Program (SYP). Both women work for FCA — Shute is product investigations manager in vehicle safety and regulatory compliance and Hand works as a reactive problem solving master blackbelt instructor.

Continue reading Women Get First Hand Look At Auto Industry

Duo Security, Michigan Theater To Screen Documentary On Women In Tech

ANN ARBOR — The Michigan Theater will host Michigan’s first screening of a 2015 documentary on the lack of women in software careers, with the sponsorshiop of Duo Security, the Ann Arbor access security developer.

“Code: Debugging The Gender Gap” explores the dearth of female and minority software engineers in the United States and explores the reasons for this gender gap and digital divide. The film highlights breakthrugh efforts that are producing more diversity in the programming industry, and shows how this gap can be closed.

The screening will take place at Michigan Theater Tuesday, Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. as part of the Science on Screen series. Following the screening, there will be a panel of women working in the technology industry sharing their thoughts on the current state of women in the industry and discussing ways to bring more women and minorities into it.

Continue reading Duo Security, Michigan Theater To Screen Documentary On Women In Tech

M2 TechCast Covers STEM Education For Girls And More

SOUTHFIELD — The Jan. 18 edition of the M2 TechCast podcast is now available for listening and download online.

The hourlong show’s first segment features Mark Becker, a partner at Grand Rapids-based tech consultants C/D/H, about the company’s Jan. 21 TechMash at its downtown Detroit office. The event will combine beer tasting and high-tech talk about enterprise systems and the cloud.

Next up was Tonya Matthews, CEO of the Michigan Science Center, about the center’s STEMinista program to boost interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics education and careers among girls.

Rachele Downs, vice president of entrepreneurial strategies at the women’s business group Inforum, was the guest in the third segment, talking about the organization’s InGAGE female entrepreneur training program.

The show wrapped up with veteran Detroit automotive journalist Marge Sorge, executive director of the Detroit Regional News Hub and its Detroit Unspun e-newsletter. The hub connects reporters with information and experts who can help them get the information they need to write complete, accurate stories about the Detroit area.

The M2 TechCast is a weekly podcast covering the people and technologies moving Michigan forward. It is hosted by Mike Brennan, owner of Michigan Technology News and its tech news blog,, and Matt Roush, director of communications and public relations at The Engineering Society of Detroit, and managing editor of its tech news publication,

The M2 TechCast airs live on the internet at 3 p.m. Eastern time Mondays at It is available for download later in the week at, iTunes and other outlets.

The M2 TechCast is part of the Podcast Detroit network of more than 30 locally produced podcasts on a wide variety of topics, from Podcast Detroit’s studios in Ferndale. The organization’s flagship podcast, IT in the D, airs live on the internet Monday nights from 9 to 11 p.m. Eastern time.

Deadline is Feb. 5 for MSU’s ‘Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day’

EAST LANSING — The Michigan State University College of Engineering welcomes fourth through eighth graders for “Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day” on Saturday, Feb. 27, from 1 to 4 p.m. The registration deadline is Friday, Feb. 5.

Register at this link. 

Teresa Isela VanderSloot, director of Women in Engineering, Recruitment and K-12 Outreach for the college, said the half-day event is filled with fun hands-on activities that inspire innovation, explore future careers, and show how engineers can change the world.

Continue reading Deadline is Feb. 5 for MSU’s ‘Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day’