The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News


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Different perspectives at Society of Women’s Engineers meeting

Cam’ron Hardy

Confidence and success were the main themes of a presentation during the Society of Women Engineers monthly meeting Wednesday evening.

Allison Henrichs, an Eastern alumni, was the guest speaker for the event. Henrichs graduated Eastern with her bachelors degree in 2017 and her masters degree in 2019.

Her presentation was a combination of a story of her upbringing, overcoming adversity and navigating the professional world from a woman’s point of view.

She urged the audience to value themselves, be confident and to not take failures personally.

Her presentation included statistics about inequality in the workplace.

Henrichs also told personal stories about the challenges of being a woman working in a male-dominated industry. She works in the financial industry.

The presentation lasted approximately 40 minutes with the remaining part of the hour being open to questions from the audience. The event took place in the Martinsville Room in the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.

The questions ranged from how to overcome failures, how to avoid victimization and to how to better utilize job-finding websites such as LinkedIn.

She also told a personal story of how she found her voice in fourth grade.

“I realized that I wanted to make an impact and that I really valued fostering relationships,” Henrichs said.

Henrichs also stressed how important it is to find a network in the professional world for support.

“Definitely rely on a network,” Heinrich’s said. “If you don’t have a network, find a way to create one.”

She urged those needing support navigating the professional world to use the resources available to them, such as faculty and RSOs (registered student organizations) that could benefit them.

A key theme throughout her presentation and while answering audience questions was advocating for one’s self.

Celestine Walker, an electrical engineering major, serves as president of the campus chapter of the Society of Women Engineers. She encouraged those with an interest in engineering to join the organization.

Like Henrichs, Walker also encouraged women to be confident and follow their dreams.

“I’ll say you can pretty much do whatever you want, as long as you’re determined,” Walker said.

Walker decided to host the event to show that women who graduated Eastern can be successful. She aims to have more events and workshops in the future.

The attendees and Henrichs aimed to celebrate Women’s History and Appreciation Month through the presentation.

“I was just really happy to come and share my story and hopefully inspire others to keep paving the way,” Henrichs said.

Yaczirin Avila, a construction management major, also serves as vice president of the Society of Women Engineers. Avila said a similar sentiment to Henrichs and Walker.

“Women’s history month for me means mainly thanking all women for inspiring us and letting us know that we are able to accomplish anything,” Avila said.

Avila also said the importance of being confident and the impact it can make in a person’s industry.

“I would say that even though you walk in that room and feel intimidated, I would just put your two hands on your waist and move forward because you will make a great impact,” Avila said.


Jacob Hamm can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Jacob Hamm, Reporter
Jacob Hamm is a junior journalism major and can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].
Cam’ron Hardy, News Editor
Cam'ron is a junior journalism major. He previously served news editor and campus editor at The News. 

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