ME Students Attend SHPE Conference

In November, six students from the Department of Mechanical Engineering attended the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) conference. The annual conference brings together student and alumni members of SHPE to network and expand outreach of the society.

20 students from the UMD SHPE Chapter attended the event this year. These students were able to talk with recruiters from a variety of companies over the course of the event.

This year, there were over 4000 students in attendance at the SHPE conference. The event was held in Kansas City, Mo. from November 1-5.

A few of the mechanical engineering students who attended shared their feedback about the impact of the event on their professional development.

“Coming into the conference I really had no idea what to expect. However, from day one I was able to develop great relationships with many recruiters from several companies. I had great encounters with many recruiters from several companies. As a native of Caracas, Venezuela I loved running into individuals that were also from my home country. … Lastly, this conference brought me closer to the other members of our SHPE UMD chapter. This was a great opportunity to strengthen our chapter, and I am sure we will use this experience to build a better community of Hispanic engineers.” –Leonardo Acedo (B.S. ’19), SHPE Treasurer

“Over the course of the conference, I managed to learn a lot about myself as a person and clarify what my career goals are in the future. I was able to have great conversations with other mechanical engineering students and recruiters who helped me narrow down my interests to design and controls engineering roles. I was also able to speak with different full-time engineers about their experiences in controls and how that relates to the different interests I have developed through my classes here at the University of Maryland. I learned more about my likes and dislikes for certain positions and was able to really focus on the perfect job opportunities for me.” – William Dawkins (B.S. ’18)

“Throughout my college career, I have been in and out of SHPE meetings, as classes would keep me busy and I couldn’t find the time to be active with the organization. This semester, however, I made it a personal goal to become more active. I knew a couple of students in the student chapter, but it was fairly new to me. I honestly did not know how the conference was going to go and was nervous about being on my own. With all that said, this experience has opened my eyes to the world, opened doors to my future, and opened my heart to a new family. Attending the event with some 7,000 other students and employers was crazy! I had never been with so many people at one time in a professional setting. What took away all the fear and nervousness, were the members of our school’s chapter. Everyone was so nice, supportive, inclusive, and connected throughout the entire event that I felt I had been a part of this family since the beginning.” – Antonio Borckardt (B.S. ’18)

SHPE is involved with many events on campus. This semester they hosted an Operation Puerto Rico night to raise money and awareness for Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. SHPE is also involved with outreach, such as their Noches de Ciencias, which introduces K-12 students to STEM education through technical activities and college resources.

Published December 20, 2017