NYSEG and RG&E Women Working to Close the Energy Industry Gender Gap
By Melissa Reese, AVANGRID Gas Engineer
While engineering and the energy delivery industry are career choices made by more men than women, NYSEG, RG&E and AVANGRID have made significant progress in narrowing the gender gap during the past 20 years.
A new collaboration between AVANGRID and other energy companies is helping the effort and empowering AVANGRID’s female engineers. On July 18, NYSEG and RG&E hosted the first Western and Central NY “Lunch and Learn” event for Women in Communications and Energy (WICE).
WICE is a diversity-focused utility and communication industry organization in New York. AVANGRID is one of several companies to have corporate-level membership, funded by AVANGRID Human Resources. An unlimited number of employees may participate as members.
With the interest generated by two recent NYSEG/RG&E WICE-related events, AVANGRID’s WICE members branched out with a committee including women from National Grid. The purpose is to develop “Lunch and Learn” WICE events for upstate and western New York.
Melissa Reese – Gas Engineer, organized this successful event. Thirty-two women attended from AVANGRID, National Grid, NYSERDA, and Better Power, Inc. The meeting started with a safety contact, an introduction to WICE, and an ice-breaker activity. Donations were collected for the Syracuse YWCA Women’s Residence.
The learning program was provided by professional coach, speaker and facilitator, Tarchia Powell. Her insightful and motivating presentation, “Energy-Powered Leadership” inspired the recognition of women’s ability to shift atmospheres, drive change and help others grow.