Are women advancing fast enough into leadership positions? Yes, they’ve made impressive strides, but have they conquered the scientific stereotypes? This is a question that summer intern Shonique Miller is hoping to help change.
Miller returned to Grand Bahama Power Company two weeks ago for her second year as a summer intern in the Engineering department. Miller graduated in December 2008 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina A&T State. Not content with that or placing second in her engineering class, she took on a fellowship offered by the school so she can obtain her Master’s Degree in Engineering.
On her first two weeks of returning to GBPC she has been working with Mr. Meyer Kao a consultant for the company in Protection Engineering. “Shonique is a very bright student and is able to pick up the technical aspects of protection system programming quickly” said Meyer.
Tanya Wildgoose, the only female engineer with GBPC, will now work with Miller. Wildgoose has become a role model for Shonique, who like her role model, is breaking stereotypes by succeeding in a male dominated field. “There have been a lot of naysayers on my way, I’ve heard the ‘you don’t belong here’ comments,” says Miller, “but my mother has been there making sure I don’t give up, never letting me forget my vision.”
Shonique’s vision is what keeps her motivated. “My advice to younger students is the same one I shared with the Tabernacle graduates when I spoke at their graduation this year, you have to have a vision. Like the Bible says, without a vision people would perish, you need to write a vision for your life and follow it through, no matter what.”
Grand Bahama Power Company executives are very excited about Miller’s potential and are impressed with her work so far. Mr. Derick King, Transmission & Distribution Director stated “that I am very excited about Miller’s potential, and I’m impressed with her energy to get involved, and her enthusiasm about hands on work experience.” Mr. King also stated that the company is always in search of potential talent, however, over the past few years attracting additional good talent proved to be a big challenge. Ms. Miller shows great potential to be part of a team to ensure that we stay on the cutting edge with new technology.
“My specific field of study will be power system design and control, it works perfectly with GBPC,” said Miller. “For example, right now Grand Bahama is not growing in numbers but our needs are changing. Ten years ago not everyone had air conditioning, now everyone does. Planning and foreseeing future needs is part of what I will be studying. It’s challenging and I’m loving it.”
This young, vivacious, 25 year old seems quite ready for the challenges her field will bring. For Shonique it means lots of learning this summer with real hands on experience right in her own country. Breaking barriers and proving that women can succeed in this field, Miller seems set to do it all.