In 1918, Edith Clarke became the first woman to earn an electrical engineering degree from MIT; she also received a patent for technology that solved electric power transmission line issues and became the first female professor of electrical engineering in the United States.
Emily Roebling served as chief engineer during the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge, completed in 1883; Martha Coston created signaling flares, still used by the U.S. Navy today; and Stephanie Kwolek, one of the first female research chemists, created Kevlar. These women throughout history have one thing in common; they were engineers – and many of their accomplishments live on today, having successfully paved the path for future female engineers.
However, in modern times – still, only 13% of engineers are women¹. We at Fit-Line Global (FLG) think that needs to change and are grateful for our CEO, Ronni Levinson, who started the company 27 years ago and has led the business through multiple stretches of growth and success. She has built Fit-Line into a company that thrives on diversity and inclusion for women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics).
One of Fit-Line’s mechanical engineers, Nichole Ortiz, is a shining example of what it takes to be an engineer at FLG. Nichole works alongside the team at Fit-Line to ensure that current products and innovations are thriving and propelling Fit-Line Global to the next level.
Read below for a Q&A with Nichole – and join us in celebrating the women of Fit-Line Global on International Women’s Day today, March 8th. We are grateful for everything she does, as well as the rest of the strong and brilliant women employed at Fit-Line.
Q: What are you passionate about in your practice?
Nichole: I am passionate about the impact that engineers have in this world and for our future. Designing, planning, and testing the technology and key components that will shape how our world advances is very exciting. Every project, no matter how big or small, impacts how things will be done in the future. Engineers are the people who carry the responsibility of making things better, faster, easier, and more efficient. Every project is meant to create and build a better future. At Fit-Line, I am able to work alongside different departments to enhance the efficiency and accuracy of our processes and products – paving the path toward a world where our products are integral in the advancement of technology.
Q: What can we learn from having diversity in the workplace?
Nichole: Diversity in the workplace is essential to stimulate the most abundant and creative ideas. Every person has value to add to their team and company. By creating a diverse environment full of passionate employees with different views, experiences, and knowledge bases – companies can cultivate a team more valuable than any single-minded entity. Here at Fit-Line, the integration of genders and races of people from different backgrounds has allowed for a broad spectrum of knowledge and perspective that is utilized to advance the goals and values of Fit-Line. The women at Fit-Line play a crucial role in executing the vision and demands that make Fit-Line a leader in its industry; demonstrating how women – especially women in STEM – are key contributors to growth and progress.
Q: Tell us about a key moment that defined your career.
Nichole: A key moment that defined my career occurred during my graduation ceremony from the University of Arizona. The Dean of Engineering gave a speech where he stated, “Engineers are the people who are responsible for guiding our future but will never be known for it.” The words he spoke resonated with me. They made me understand that what I achieve in my career is not only a personal accomplishment but also a service to a future for everyone; it is a responsibility that cannot be made selfishly to succeed.
Q: What project at FLG are you most proud of and why?
Nichole: I don’t believe there is a single project that I value more than others. Every project at Fit-Line Global adds value to the company’s growth and ability to be an industry leader. Finding ways to improve and excel at all facets of our manufacturing process is what allows Fit-Line to stand out among competitors. Every project improves our ability to continue making advances in the semiconductor industry, and I am proud to be part of the amazing team of engineers, executives and staff at Fit-Line that collectively contribute to our success.
Q: Why did you join FLG? What excites you about working with this team?
Nichole: I joined Fit-Line Global because I viewed my position and the company as an opportunity to learn and grow. Our team focuses on working together to execute the advances that will take our company to the next level – and it’s an honor to work alongside my colleagues. Collaborating with a team of individuals who share a passion for growth and hard work make our successes and achieving company goals rewarding.
To learn more about Fit-Line Global, visit: www.fit-lineglobal.com.
Note:  According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: https://www.bls.gov/cps/cpsaat11.htm