Monday, May 13, 2019

#SheCanSTEM: Meet Debra Higgins

MLGW has 2770 employees; 752 (27%) are women. Of the 752 women, 143 (19%) hold STEM positions. On the second Tuesday of every month, we will introduce you to a different woman working in STEM at MLGW.

Debra Higgins is originally from the Walker Homes area in Memphis.  She was inspired to pursue engineering by a “Career Day” speaker when she was a student at Central High School. 

Debra is currently the Lead Engineer for the Streetlight Engineering Department at MLGW where she directs an eight member staff; evaluates and approves designs and sketches for traffic signals, streetlight installations and relocations; and works with municipalities and commercial customers to develop designs for streetlight installations.   

We asked Debra a few questions to get to know her better.

What's interesting or cool about what you do?

I communicate daily with Shelby County residents from all walks of life and assist in resolving issues concerning street lighting and other utility services. This allows me to reflect on the tremendous impact of safe reliable utility services and how the efforts of MLGW employees dramatically improve the quality of life for our customers.

Why would you encourage girls to pursue STEM careers?  

The challenges are great but the rewards are even greater. 
I have a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Christian Brothers University, a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Louisiana State University, and I am a licensed professional engineer in the state of Tennessee. Our customers continue to emphasize that reliable streetlight service directly relates to community safety.  I use every aspect of the problem solving skills that I acquired in my undergraduate Engineering and graduate Business curriculums in my current role, and I am able to see the impact of my work within the community. 

What advice would you give your younger self?

A good sense of humor is essential.  If you make a mistake - get up and try again.

Did you miss our other installments of #SheCanSTEM? Meet Arnisa Davis here and Kelsey Seiter here.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...