Advancing Our Mission Together, with Pride

Our community shares the collective knowledge gained from so many different technical challenges, leadership experiences, and hard-won life lessons.

As we come into the final months of SWE’s fiscal year, I want to take a moment to reflect on how amazing SWE members are and the great strength they bring to this organization. I’m reminded of that strength as I see the discussions people engage in on our social media platforms — sharing advice on topics ranging from selecting a major, to making the most of an internship, negotiating an offer, transitioning into new roles, and being one’s authentic self. It’s inspiring to know that in every one of those discussions, our members are working to achieve our mission: advancing the engineering profession, advocating for one another (or helping someone advocate for themself), and celebrating one another’s successes.

I’m reminded of that strength when I meet members in person — at WE21 in Indianapolis, where so many of our collegiate and early-career members thanked me for being onstage at 35 weeks pregnant, demonstrating that it is possible to have a career, lead an organization like SWE, and have a family. Thank you for reminding me that sometimes, showing up can be inspirational too.

I’ve also had the privilege of meeting members in person at our WE Local conferences in the United States and virtually during WE Local India. I am in awe when I hear about the work that each person is engaged in, the way they have integrated their school and work and personal lives, what drew them to the engineering profession, or what they hope to give back to the world.

Every conversation, whether in person or through virtual means, strengthens the community that we have created together. The community that lifts each other, cheers each other on, and celebrates each other’s successes. Our community shares the collective knowledge gained from so many different technical challenges, leadership experiences, and hard-won life lessons. We teach each other and help each other grow into the best versions of ourselves.

To that end, this issue of SWE Magazine highlights Women Engineers You Should Know — nominees from an array of backgrounds who were nominated by you, their fellow SWE members. We had so many nominations this year that we increased the number of women who are highlighted, and I think you’ll agree that each person is certainly someone we should know. The great thing about our SWE community and each of you, our remarkable members, is that we will never run out of candidates for this annual recognition because each of you is an engineer we should know.

As we close out the year, I want to thank our SWE leaders, volunteers, and the staff at headquarters for all your hard work. FY22 was our hybrid year. We worked together to be flexible and pivot when required, all while maintaining high standards of excellence. Thank you for your commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. While we have work yet to accomplish, I’m proud of the progress we’ve made.

Each SWE member can take pride in advancing our mission together. Thank you for being a part of SWE and for all you do to enrich our community. You all inspire me.

Rachel Morford
FY22 SWE President
(she, her, hers)