Series 8 – Episode 6 – Creating a community for women in electronics

15th July 2022
Paige West

Paige West talks with Monica Highfill, Vice President, Executive Committee Member and Board of Director at Women in Electronics about the organisation’s members, the programmes it offers and how we can expand the opportunities for women in this industry.

Women in Electronics (WE) was formed by a group of 20 women in the electronics industry during its inaugural conference in the fall of 2017.

WE was the brainchild of Jackie Mattox, who soon brought in Monica Highfill (then with KEMET Electronics) and Amy Keller, Abracon, (then Arrow Electronics) to build the organisation with the premise of women working collaboratively to find inspiration, strength, and empowerment through a sense of community.

The organisation has four goals:

  1. Empower women through virtual event discussion groups
  2. Develop women with the Life Balance Series and Professional and Personal Leadership Development Programme
  3. Advocate for ourselves and others through the professional career coaching in the Mentorship Programme
  4. Celebrate the accomplishments and advancement of women

It’s common knowledge that women in the electronics industry are outnumbered by their male counterparts. Highfill comments: “We have talent that comes into our industry, into the workforce. They’re just not being promoted into leadership positions at the same rate at men.”

Highfill observes that the pandemic was very detrimental to women in the workplace, compared to men. She said: “Some of the data had shown, before the pandemic, that there were steps being made and that there was a little bit of growth.

“But the data at this point shows that we still have challenges and issues and women left work during the pandemic at a far higher rate than men.”

Highfill goes on to explain how women differ from their male counterparts when it comes to professional development and offers her advice for young girls and women considering a career in the electronics industry.

To hear more about Women in Electronics and much more, you can listen to Electronic Specifier’s interview with Monica Highfill on Spotify or Apple Podcasts.

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