Celebrating International Women in Engineering Day 2024

International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) is an extraordinarily important day for the engineering community, recognizing the accomplishments women have brought to the industry. Women in STEM/STEAM continue to break the glass ceiling and set new standards for excellence, proving that a predominately male-dominated profession can be just as well-fitting for women. Every engineer is unique, bringing their perspective, experience (professional and personal), and problem-solving solutions to a project – and as we celebrate our differences, we also embrace our similarities. This year, to commemorate INWED  2024, we chatted with two of our Airport Engineers about their journeys to their individuality and likeness as engineers.


Alexis Collazo, Engineer-Airports, and Stephanie Lopez Cruz, PE, Project Manager-Airports are currently working on a project together in Stuart, FL where they are designing and replacing airfield signage/lighting for a client airport. Although the project may seem simple, there are always small intricacies to each airport. Learning and working together is something both Alexis and Stephanie value in their careers. Stephanie told us some of her best advice for other female engineers is to find a mentor or make time to build relationships with other experienced professionals in the industry. She says, “There is so much to learn from those who have walked the path before us. As a woman in a male-dominated field, it’s especially valuable to seek advice and insights from those who have pioneered this journey”. This is especially good advice for Alexis or any engineer being only a few years post-grad and learning a lot every day on the job. But the learning doesn’t stop once you hit a certain landmark or career goal – it’s something we continue to do daily as we evolve as people or in this case, professional engineers. Alexis gives some great life advice, saying: “Don’t ever doubt yourself. In 10 years, when you look back at all that you have accomplished, you will see that you were capable of more than you could ever set your mind to. When we are younger, we feel the societal pressures and become hyper-critical of ourselves but as you grow older, you learn to tune out the noise. You learn that the only thing holding yourself back from getting to where you want to go, is yourself”.

As previously mentioned, women in STEM are still underrepresented, and even more so when you look at the statistics of minority women in STEM professions. A study done in 2021 delivered results that women made up about 48% of the STEM workforce, and within that, only about 20% were Hispanic/Latina (Deitz, 2023). Alexis and Stephanie help break down that barrier, also both being a minority within a minority, they found strength in bringing their diversity to the forefront and shedding stigma. Alexis talks about the difficulties of not seeing representation as a Latina in STEM, but how it gave her even more drive to push her capabilities and provide a pathway for those behind her. She and Stephanie made opportunities for themselves to gain knowledge through school, extracurricular clubs, and even working abroad in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, which is home for Stephanie.

Stephanie and Alexis

The most rewarding part of being an engineer for Alexis is having a hands-on approach to projects and watching her designs become a reality before her eyes. For Stephanie, she says “The most rewarding experience in my career has been helping others, particularly younger engineers, start and progress in their careers. I’ve especially enjoyed participating in college recruiting, matching talented young men and women with professional opportunities, and being there to support and advise them through the early stages of their careers”. There are so many aspects to the job that make it a fulfilling career for many, and Stephanie and Alexis hope they can inspire other women interested in being an engineer to take that leap. Particularly working in aviation, they find that “every day is different” and that “all disciplines of engineering are melted together in this niche field”.

Engineering is an incredibly rewarding and humble profession, as we transform today’s ideas into tomorrow’s reality, we also set the stage for future generations to come. As we celebrate and highlight the growth of women in the profession this INWED, we should continue to strive for equity and diversity, allowing for a melting pot of ideas and perspectives to guide us.


Deitz, E. G. and S. (2023, January 30). Diversity and STEM: Women, Minorities, and Parsons with Disabilities. NSF/NCSES. https://ncses.nsf.gov/pubs/nsf23315/report/the-stem-workforce