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Pamela Lee-Shanok

A Conversation with Pamela

What is your current job? Please list the title and briefly describe what it involves

I am the Youth Programs Manager for the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Ottawa. I manage the Adventures in Engineering and Science, which offers summer camps, workshops, clubs, and events for children 5 to 17 years old. It’s a very run and rewarding job which allows me to participate in all aspects of an organization’s day-to-day operations including: hiring, training, promoting,budgeting, fundraising, administrating, and reporting.

What made you want to pursue a career in engineering?

I have always loved the problem-solving aspect of math and science, particularly physics. Since I was interested in medicine, but I hated memorization, I decided to pursue a degree in Pre-Optometry. After a year of studying Pre-Optometry I knew that I wanted to change my degree. At the time, the University of Ottawa was offering an option in bio-design for its Mechanical Engineering program (this has since been developed into its own program called Biomedical Mechanical Engineering). I was very excited about the prospect of taking classes such as Artificial Organs and Prostheses, so I decided to study engineering.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

I love knowing the direct impact I am making on future engineers and scientists. My job is to break down stereotypes and intimidation that may come from a fear of the unknown, with respect to STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). It’s incredibly rewarding to hear back from a child or parent about how wonderful their summer camp experience was and how it has fueled the child’s interest in STEM.

How do you celebrate National Engineering Month?

I’m lucky to be working for the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Ottawa because I hear about all of the wonderful events taking place on campus. Each year I attend various engineering seminars during the month of March where I get to learn from successful engineers (many of them women) and about the current research being done at the university.

What advice do you have for young women who hope to pursue a career in your field?

Follow your passions, wherever they may take you. Continue doing what you love to do, regardless of what your family or friends want or expect from you. Be open to new experiences and don’t be afraid to try.

Pamela’s BiographyPamela Lee-Shanok currently works as the Youth Programs Manager for the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Ottawa, where she is managing the Adventures in Engineering and Science program. She graduated magna cum laude from the Mechanical Engineering program (option in bio-design) at the University of Ottawa. She went on to complete a Bachelor of Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. She has taught English in South Korea as well as various science and mathematics courses in the GTA and Ottawa. Her passion for STEM education has brought her back to academia, where she is currently working toward a Masters degree in Education at the University of Ottawa.

Nous travaillons avec l'industrie et le milieu universitaire pour éduquer sur la valeur de la diversité pour l'innovation, inspirer les femmes à prospérer et célébrer les contributions des femmes en sciences et en génie.
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