Name: Erin Keys
Company: Webber Energy Group (University of Texas at Austin)
Title: IGERT Fellow (Graduate Research Assistant)
Was there a person in your life that encouraged you in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and/or to enter your specific field? If so, please tell us a little bit about how she/he encouraged you:
Erin: Two people in particular encouraged me to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering. One of these influential people was my high school chemistry teacher, and the other influential person was my father. Mrs. Cohlmia, my high school chemistry teacher, pushed me to stew on concepts individually before asking others for help. Although complying with her wish was challenging (and annoying!) in the beginning, I started to realize the magnitude of my analytical abilities. From that realization, I grew a love for problem solving. My father, as an engineer by training, served as more of a role model for me. That, and while driving through Texas on the way to his hometown, he would underline the fact that "you need to major in mechanical engineering" in response to my question wondering "what do I need to study in order to work with wind turbines?"