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Unlocking Your Brilliance: Smart Strategies for Women to Thrive in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Hardcover – August 1, 2012
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About the Author
Karen Purcell, P.E., is a dynamic engineer, entrepreneur, and author focused on helping women create meaningful futures in the STEM fields. As the founder and president of PK Electrical, she draws on her experience to inspire young women to enter the STEM fields with confidence. Her nonprofit organization, STEMspire, was founded to support that mission. She is actively involved in the Reno Tahoe Entrepreneurs' Organization and has held numerous officer positions. She also won a 2012 Reno Gazette-Journal Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Karen is an avid marathon runner, Girl Scout troop leader, and volunteer with Big Brothers, Big Sisters. She lives in Reno, Nevada, with her husband and two daughters.
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Top Customer Reviews
I think this is a book that should be handed out at every graduation, to every woman, maybe even the males. Karen Purcell offers some of the most important and most wonderful advice for anybody to succeed in life. She goes into great detail, explaining in a simple to understand way, how to achieve what you want in life, and how to grab a hold of your dreams and thrive.
The fact that she wrote this book to help others, and share her own story of inspiration, makes this book extremely valuable and a book that will be opened up for many days, months and years to come. There really is something in there for everybody.
This book relates to most of us, and can help you gain more knowledge of what you desire, and want in order to become the person you want to be. Whether you are in any of the fields Karen discusses,(STEM), or not, she explains what you must do in order to get there.
STEM is, science, technology, engineering and math. and just like the title states, "Smart Strategies for Women to Thrive..."
I especially liked how the author uses her own story, and how she got interested in sharing her story, and the fact that males actually persuaded her to write this, is another positive to mention here. It shows the author has had some positive role models, and friends, from both sexes, and that alone gives hope for females who are struggling in the workplace and in college.
It really made me think, and more so since I have daughters, but the part where she discusses how college admissions can be when you are a male, entering these fields, (or any other more thought, "male dominated" career), really hits home. Again, I have never personally been in this type of situation, well actually now that I think about it, I have. But not to this degree, and as quick as that situation came about, it was knocked right down.
I forgot for a moment about the time I started bartending about 21 years ago, and a friend of the owners had a son who decided one day he would like to bartend. So, I went in for my shift, and was told that he would be working behind the bar and I would be waiting tables. That was rather upsetting, not that there is anything wrong with waiting tables, but I was on schedule to be behind the bar that night, and this kid who was home from college break decided he was to be back there.
This went on for a week or so, and after several complaints about his lack of skills, and attitude problem with our customers, he was finally knocked back down. Although he still kept his attitude and continued his comments about how in the old days, only the men were bartenders. Well, he wasn't the best bartender and he was certainly the slowest I have seen. The final straw came when his own dad had to wait for awhile for a drink while this kid stood there fixing his hair in the mirror behind the bar.
So, actually, yes, I do recall a time when there was a dilemma in my life/career, and unfortunately, it isn't always so easy to prove that fast. Lucky for the 3 girls who worked there, he just happened to be a little flaky;)
Building confidence is one of the most important lessons we must instill in our children, girls or boys, and this book takes it one step further.
I would recommend this book to students, whether college or high school, any career minded or career women, or men, (Yes, there is so much to absorb from Karen's story) and even anybody who has a daughter or 2 of their own.
** I received a copy of this book in return for my honest review **
I never enjoyed science. I took the bare minimums in high school and college because I couldn't find it within myself to do much more. Technology and Engineering are way out of my brain capacity. I'm ok with that.
In high school I took Bookkeeping, Law, Business, and Accounting classes. In college I majored in accounting and received my associates. Later in life I received my Bachelors in General Studies with majors in Accounting, Business and Marketing. Now, I am working on my Masters in the same. Business and Marketing. I feel I kept it safe. I thought about law school but the thought of being in school that long didn't interest me. I did toy with the idea of a Math degree but I never felt smart enough. I never got the science part of it.
I would have if someone would have helped me.
And that is what this book does. It helps. Even though I no longer have a desire to change majors or do something else with my life because I am going after my one true love - writing, I do have a 7 year old step daughter who would benefit from me reading this book.
After reading through this book I think it should be required reading for all education professionals. I feel we are in a day and age where all aspects of higher education and careers should be out there for girls to choose from and it makes me sad that we still live in a sexist society.
Not only will it shed some light on these career paths, but it will help open the door and start the conversation. I also highly recommend it to any mother or father because it will help open that door for discussion with your children. We really do live in an era where anyone can become anything they want.
Karen touches on is how females are not as exposed to these things as they probably should be. I like that now Girl Scouts has badges for robotics and stuff like that - I would have LOVED that when I was a kid - I was the only one who earned the "Ms Fix It" badge in my troop. I'd have enjoyed making robots a lot better than some of the activities that we did. It seems like many companies are trying to reach out to young girls and expose them to the STEM fields and I am all for it. I often voice how I wish that a new hire at work would be a female. Not that I don't like the guys I work with - but it would be nice to have another girl my age around sometimes
If you are considering a job in the STEM fields then I definitely recommend you check out this book - it has a lot of good advice and I wish that I had something like this to read when I was finishing up college. I received a free copy of this book in order to write this review and all opinions are my own.