PVAMU International Student One of the Top Chosen for GE Aviation Summit

A PVAMU engineering student recently had the chance to represent the university at a leadership summit for women.

Maria Rossana Ruiz, a senior set to graduate with a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering spring 2019, was chosen as one in the top 30 of 950 candidates to attend the General Electric (GE) Aviation Female Leadership Summit, held October 25-27 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

At the summit, the students took a tour of the GE aviation headquarters plant where they learned about jet engines and how they are made, in addition to viewing the latest aviation technology. They also had the opportunity to attend sessions with Athena Kaviris, vice president, human resources, and Jean M. Lydon-Rodgers, president and chief executive officer, GE Aviation Services, who provided insight on their career paths and provided professional and leadership development advice.

“The summit was a great opportunity to network with a diverse group of students from all over the U.S. and from different universities, she said. “Having been the only student chosen from PVAMU, and only one of two from an HBCU, I’ll like to influence other fellow classmates to apply for next year.”

Ruiz is the first of her family to attend PVAMU. Originally from Chihuahua, Mexico, she came to the university after first attending Houston Community College. After she graduates, she is hoping to get a full-time role to gain experience as an engineer, hopefully in a role related to technology or aviation, before pursuing her master’s in mechatronics.

“Women need to be more exposed to these kinds of opportunities,” she said. “Generally speaking, I’d also like to see more effort from companies to recruit more women engineers in all specialties, including aviation. I would advise female engineering students not to limit themselves, to be assured that they will learn along the way and accept the chance to take this educational path as a challenge.”

By Emilia Benton