Celebrating Women in Engineering Day with Adilene Mendino Estrada
Today to celebrate International Women in Engineering Day (INWED), we sat down with Adilene Mendino Estrada to discuss what it means to be a woman in engineering.
Adilene is a Senior Staff Engineer at PEA Group with nearly 10 years of experience. Her engineering career began at the University of Houston, where she received her bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. When she graduated, she worked under a female project manager, watching her navigate the industry without hesitation. For Adilene, this experience was key in motivating her to become the engineer she is today and not letting gender be an obstacle to achieving her goals. This experience set the foundation for her to pursue a career that would allow her to use her problem-solving skills while making an impact in the community.
While more women, like Adilene, are receiving degrees and entering the STEM workforce, there is still a discrepancy between men and women in the field. In 1970, it was reported that women made up only 8% of STEM workers. By 2019, that number increased to 28%. Despite girls across the globe having better test scores in science and math than boys, they are often discouraged from entering the STEM field.
According to Geospatial World, Women face greater gender discrimination in STEM workplaces in comparison to other occupations. In engineering, specifically, women only made up 15% of the engineering field.
“Women who are a part of a male-dominated field face daily challenges,” Adilene states, acknowledging that this is something she has experienced as a woman in engineering. Adilene believes the best thing a woman in engineering can do for herself is find a mentor who can support you during challenging times and celebrate your victories. She suggests that women who have been in the field “pay it forward” and become a mentor to other women entering the field.
Adilene encourages women in engineering to get involved with organizations such Society of Women Engineers as a resource for networking and career growth. Talking to other people has been one of Adilene’s most valuable resources. She believes different people with different experience levels can beat a website or book. She is continually amazed at how much she learns from talking to other people.
The Terry Foundation Alumni Organization, although not an engineering organization, holds a special place in Adilene’s life as the organization has provided continuous support during her college years and even after graduation. She enjoys being part of this diverse group while at the same time promoting STEM and providing support to engineering students. Adilene was also a part of The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers while attending the University of Houston and continues to attend their professional events. As a Hispanic woman in engineering, this organization has always supported her in numerous ways.
Today, we celebrate and thank Adilene and all the women in engineering!
About International Women in Engineering Day
International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) is an international campaign to raise awareness about career opportunities for women in engineering and celebrating those in the field. First established eight years ago by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES) in the UK, the holiday was first recognized as Women In Engineering Day. The holiday gained international attention and in 2016, received patronage from The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), becoming an international holiday the following year.
About Adilene Mendino Estrada
Adilene Mendino Estrada brings almost 10 years of experience to PEA Group. She graduated from the University of Houston in 2015 with a BS in Civil Engineering. She holds a Texas EIT Certificate. At PEA Group, she is responsible for conducting due diligence for site and detention layouts, preparing civil construction documents, and designing grading, drainage, sanitary, and water utilities. Adilene’s additional responsibilities include coordinating with multiple jurisdictions to receive approval of private and public plans and providing construction administration support for publicly bid projects.