More Women Needed For Engineering and Computer Science


POSTED: Monday, August 20, 2012 - 9:32am

UPDATED: Wednesday, August 22, 2012 - 7:26am

EDINBURG - Lizbeth Bgarza won't be carrying her back pack much longer, Saturday marks the end of her education at UTPA.

 "well I am about to graduate with my masters degree in engineering here at the University of Texas Pan American," said Lizbeth Bgarza, Graduate Student.

She'll be graduating with several classmates, but Bgarza is alone in once aspect of graduation, she will be the only female graduating in her major. It's a gender ratio the university is really noticing.

"We certainly feel that there should be more girls in engineering. It is evolving. Back in the day, they would build engineering buildings and there would be no women's bathrooms in them," said Dr. Miguel Gonzalez, UTPA Associate Dean.

There are women's bathrooms at UTPA of course, but a sad truth is that women in math and science are very out numbered by their counter parts.

For every one girl, there are actually 17 to 20 guys in the computer science and engineering field. Now that is not just here at UTPA, these statistics actually match up with the national average.

Bgarza said she definitely noticed she was outnumbered when she first walked into the classroom.

"I did know there were a few girls, however it did scare me in the beginning a little bit, but then I saw that the guys tend to be nice to the girls they don't, since you are in a professional environment they will treat you nice," said Bgarza.

Bgarza said it gets to a point the male, female difference isn't even noticeable. Mostly because, most everyone is so focused on their work and study.

Bgarza now even teaches engineering herself.

"One thing that I do want to take out of, and teach the students is that engineering is not only for men, it is also for women," said Bgarza.

Saturday Bgarza will walk across the commencement stage receiving her masters in mechanical engineering, a true role model for every women interested in math and science.

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