November Member of the Month: Aparna Rajesh
Each month, the Reinvented team votes on a Member of the Month based on factors including dedication to the team, team spirit, and contributions to Reinvented. We are beyond proud to call Aparna one of our volunteers and are thrilled to recognize her as our November Member of the Month!
Aparna Rajesh | Writing Officer
Education: Stevens Institute of Technology - Computer science with a concentration in machine learning and artificial intelligence
How did you get involved in STEM?
I initially started with FIRST robotics. I began playing with LEGO Mindstorms robots in the second grade, and I found that I really enjoyed building, programming, and competing with robots. I continued to compete in FIRST and eventually found a passion for engineering and computing. I had the privilege of spending my entire high school career as the captain of one of the YWCA Princeton's all-girls FIRST Tech Challenge teams--my time on the team was one of the driving forces behind my decision to major in computer science. Robotics helped me find a passion for computer science in automation, and my experience in it allowed me to get a headstart in partaking in institutional robotics research!
Why did you join Reinvented Magazine?
I had received a significant amount of pushback for being a girl in male-dominated competitive STEM environments and knew firsthand how difficult it can be for young girls to navigate through the bro-culture that is so prevalent in tech. I wanted to have a meaningful impact on young girls who are interested in STEM and help do away with the stereotypes that often dissuade girls from pursuing STEM. I began writing a blog about my experiences as a girl in STEM to connect with others and help other girls realize that they're not alone. Though it was in its infancy at the time, I had a feeling Reinvented would eventually become a great success when I first happened upon the concept in the NCWIT Aspirations group. Everyone seemed as passionate and excited as I was. Joining Reinvented just seemed like the most natural course of action.
Who is your favorite female STEM role model?
Do you have any hobbies outside of Reinvented?
Robotics, mentoring students, writing (:P), and cooking.
What is your favorite quote?
"Whatever you are, be a good one." - William Makepeace Thackeray