RTM Engineering Consultant Kathryn Duytschaever, P.E., recently appeared on Paula Sands Live (KWQC TV6) to discuss how RTM is leading the way and championing women engineers and encouraging more girls to get involved in STEM-focused careers. (Click here to view the segment.)
Duytschaever grew up in a family of engineers. With her father working in industrial engineering and her mother in electrical engineering, Duytschaever inevitably developed a curiosity and interest within the field.
“Exposing girls to STEM as early as possible is very important, to show them that they can break the typical gender roles,” says Duytschaever. “They can become engineers or scientists, whatever they want to do. The world is endless for them.”
Although there is a 5 percent increase since 1997 of female involvement within STEM careers, women still only make up 28 percent of the STEM-related job force.
Duytschaever has given STEM talks at schools within her community and as a strong advocate for STEM education, she wants to highlight that “it’s cool to build things and great to be a problem solver.” Duytschaever has nine years of experience in mechanical systems design, with a focus on LEED and sustainable elements. At RTM, she effectively designs and manages projects from concept to completion within the retail, commercial, education, healthcare, and residential markets. She has extensive knowledge of the A/E/C industry and is a licensed Professional Engineer in 16 states, including Iowa.
In conjunction with National Engineers Week, RTM is participating in the Introduce a Girl to Engineering event, a fun and educational program created by the Engineering and Physical Science Department and Society of Women Engineers Collegiate Interest Group at St. Ambrose University to introduce girls to engineering and reinforce how they can use their skills in STEM fields to make a difference in the world.
The Introduce a Girl to Engineering event takes place on Feb. 23 and 550 girls between the ages of 3-13 have already signed up to participate.
To learn more about STEM and how you can get involved in local initiatives, email Kathryn.