April 2, 2016
Meet five of the smart, innovative women who lead STEM initiatives at Southern New Hampshire University. We asked, "What advice would you give to women in STEM fields starting out today?" Here's what they had to say.
Executive Director, Online STEM Programs
Gwen Britton is a computer scientist, engineer and mathematician with experience in K-12 and higher ed teaching, curriculum development and organizational leadership. She's also a software engineer, math nerd, former high school volleyball, robotics and computer science team coach and "Capture the Flag" team coach at SNHU.
"Never underestimate yourself. You are smart. You are creative. You are a problem solver. Believe in the power of you!"
Associate Dean of Science, Online STEM Programs
Jill Nugent has nearly 17 years of experience in science and science education. She has worked in a natural science museum, large school district and three universities. Jill earned her BS and MS from Texas A&M University, where she studied wild canid behavior and conservation. Jill is a PhD candidate at Texas Tech University, focusing her research on locally engaged, globally connected citizen science.
"Even if you don't have your dream job now, volunteer, network and gain experience while keeping a keen focus on discovering what you're good at, what you love doing, what the world needs and what you can be paid for."
Data Analytics and Information Technology Adjunct Faculty
Litia Sheldon has been an online instructor since 2003. In the 1990s, she earned her MBA online. She received an online MISM with a database focus in the 2000s. Litia spent over 20 years in the IT field and recently shifted her career to become a quantitative investment research analyst.
"Go against the stated foundation of science proof. In STEM fields, we rely on statistical data, and all the statistics tell us women are statistically insignificant. We need to ignore these signals and enter STEM fields to show how strong our signal and statistical significance really is."
Associate Dean, Online STEM Programs
Angela Foss has worked in higher education for over 10 years. She has a BS in Computer Engineering and experience in hardware, software and video game development. Angela is passionate about supporting women in the technical fields and has continuously participated in women's leadership groups and technical women's organizations. At SNHU, she supports the student-run group, Women in IT.
"Always remember to be authentic to who you are. This sometimes takes bravery. The goal of having more women in STEM fields is to bring diversity and innovation, and that can only be achieved if we are true to ourselves."
Data Analytics Adjunct Professor
Deirdre Jablonski is an IT professional with over 17 years of experience implementing global solutions in the supply chain and data management sectors as an ERP implementation consultant. She was a 12-year veteran of the U.S. Navy prior to entering civilian life and starting a career as an IT professional.
"Don't be intimidated by those who seem to know more than you. Ask questions or reach out to people who inspire you. Always be confident in your ability, give yourself credit for your accomplishments and leave yourself room to grow."
Associate Dean of Undergraduate Information Technology Faculty
Cheryl Frederick has worked as a software developer in several industries, including the Department of Defense, live television and telecommunication. Her passion for educational technology led her to focus on online higher education. Cheryl has an MS in Computer Engineering and is pursuing a PhD in Educational Technology. When she is not conducting research, you can find her on the golf course.
"Let your enthusiasm and dedication to the discipline fuel your confidence."
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