#DisabledandHired: Systems Test Engineer at Northrop Grumman Corporation
Disability:IN highlights various young leaders with disabilities in the NextGen Leader Spotlight Series. If you are a corporate partner (or potential partner), and would like more information on our Disability:IN’s NextGen Leaders, please contact Liz (firstname.lastname@example.org). If you are a young leader with a disability, and would like more information on the Disability:IN Mentorship Exchange or the Disability:IN Talent Accelerator, please contact Keri (email@example.com).
The number of students with disabilities attending higher education in the United States now represents 6% of the student body. As with any graduate, their professional success will stem from a number of things, including work ethic, opportunity, and, for some, having a mentor to guide them.
Quality mentoring relationships have a powerful effect on young people in a variety of situations – personal, academically and professional. Initiatives like the Disabilty:IN Mentorship Exchange were created to further those opportunities. This six-month career mentoring strategy brings together employers with college students with disabilities and recent graduates with disabilities in a mutually beneficial way. Through the Disabilty:IN’s association with over 130 corporate partners, we match at least 70 individuals to business professionals in their field of study, area of interest, and whom they would not otherwise have access to. The Mentorship Exchange connects students like Angie Dauer to experts that can provide professional growth and development, and social and economic opportunities.
Angie has a passion for math. She has an Associate of Science in Mathematics from Mendocino College, a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Mathematics from UC Berkeley, and a Master in Science in Applied Mathematics with a concentration in Math Theory of Communication Systems from San Diego State University.
Once she graduated from San Diego State University in 2015, her career goals were very fluid. She began volunteering for a non-profit, and soon learned about the Mentorship Exchange, thinking “it would be a perfect fit to help [her] understand how to get [her] foot in the door at a company and get paid to do something [she] enjoyed.” She was accepted into the program, and, while there, was exposed to the Disability:IN, its initiatives, resources and Disability:IN Annual Conference.
Intrigued by the potential, she attended the conference, and was amazed by the number of company representatives looking to grow their company’s numbers of individuals with disabilities, and actively obtaining and sustaining employees with disabilities. “The support of individuals with disabilities and willingness to learn and admit where knowledge gaps exist was astounding to me.”
Angie’s experience at the Disability:IN Conference was transformative. Throughout the weekend, Angie was able to experience first hand the benefits of the Disability:IN programs. Programs that encourage underrepresented people in the workplace; programs that give viable tools and huge networking opportunities to individuals and companies; and programs that help focus on professional development of individuals with disabilities.
The weekend also exposed her to an assortment of companies she would be proud to work with. In fact, she’s excited about her recently accepted position as a systems test engineer at Northrop Grumman Corporation, and hopes to continue to gain new knowledge and techniques to elevate her skills in that role.
Angie is now a mentor and a mentee. She’s passionate about growing her knowledge, and helping others understand the possibilities of what they can achieve, and reach their highest potential.
The Disability:IN Mentorship Exchange is designed to support students and recent graduates as they navigate the professional world, and answer unique questions that relate to being a person with a disability in the workforce. The Disability:IN will be accepting mentee applications for the 2018 Mentorship Exchange in the fall of 2017.Visit disabilityin.org for more information about Mentorship Exchange, and the 2017 Disability:IN Conference.
Student Spotlight: Chris Gaines
Chris wants students with disabilities to appreciate disability in the context of intersectionality. As a Black man with a disability, he has had two societal challenges and is proud to share both selves.
Student Spotlight – Danny Tanchez
The Mentorship Exchange Program connects students like Daniel Tanchez to experts that can provide professional growth and development, and social and economic opportunities.
“I believe programs like the Talent Accelerator will help breakdown the stigmas around disability…”
While Bryan believes most major companies recognize the importance of diversity in the workplace, he feels actively investing in programs such as the Talent Accelerator underscores the commitment to diversity and inclusion.
“Become part of a group that is a great source for networking and launching a spectacular career…”
The Disability:IN Mentorship Exchange connects students like Paul Trevino to experts that can provide professional growth and development, and social and economic opportunities.
“Hannah loves working with a group of people dedicated to promoting disability rights…”
Hannah recently accepted a position as Program Coordinator for the Disability:IN, where she gets to work on a number of projects. As a NextGen Leader alum, Hannah’s assistance with the NextGen Leaders Initiatives will be invaluable.