Have you ever told someone what you do and they look at you in complete shock? Like it’s utterly unfathomable that you do what you do for a living? Well here more than halfway through 2017 and STILL people find it absolutely preposterous that I am an engineer. That this is was an engineer looks like. And I just don’t understand what’s so hard to believe. I mean seriously the picture above is my actual reaction when people tell me that there’s no way I am an engineer.
I can’t decide if it’s hard for people to accept this because I don’t dress in the typical female engineer attire, the unflattering mom jeans and seasons old Sketchers. Which I got news for you, I ain’t sorry. Or that they saw me drive up to work with my stereo blasting, probably one of the various untalented rap artists out today because I like the beat, only to step out in a burgundy suit? Is it that I’m such a contradiction to what people assume I should be based on their experiences or stereotypes? Could it simply just be because I am a woman of color? And after the horrific events in Charlottesville over the weekend, this sadly doesn’t seem so far-fetched. Honestly, I will never know.
What I do know is it’s been exhausting trying to figure it out. Tiring to hear and see comments on my posts or others like “I wish you wouldn’t dress like that because I want us female engineers to be taken seriously” or “I can’t imagine what my husband who is an engineer would say if you walked into work wearing that“. But as Jidenna said, “No matter what you say, Or where you go or what you do, Or how you pray, Somebody’s gonna feel some kind of way about you”. So I’m learning to tune out the noise. The snide comments about my, or other female engineer’s, outfits. Which funny enough have NEVER come from anyone at my job.
I show up to work everyday wearing what makes me feel amazing, and happens to be rather fashionable, because I want other women to know that it’s okay to have duality. To change the narrative of what it means to look like an engineer. Because you can be the always on point co-worker and still be taken seriously at your job. As well as like Michael Bublé and Future or watch Anime instead of reality TV. Even in a male dominated field like engineering. You do not have to limit yourself to people’s expectations. Be who you want to be, dress how you want to dress, within reason of your company’s dress code of course, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Never forget that you can be exactly who you are and still succeed in this world, trust me. Unless you’re serial killer, sociopath or other words I’d like to say but I’ll leave those thoughts for another day. Keep scrolling to shop my female engineer attire and other picks otherwise see my engineer’s guide on building a wardrobe.
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Shop my Female Engineer Work Friendly Picks for Fall:
**Photos by Remy Roman