The idea behind WIAA is to take away the stigma that women don’t belong, showing everyone that there is a community that can help you to foster growth and help break down stereotypes in the industry.
UMD Degree: B.S. ’16, aerospace engineering
Occupation: Graduate research assistant in UMD’s Morpheus Laboratory, National Institute of Aerospace
Growing up, Rose Weinstein excelled in her high school STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) classes. When she received her acceptance letter to the A. James Clark School of Engineering, Weinstein was thrilled—and also a little intimidated.
Weinstein’s high school didn’t offer higher-level STEM courses such as physics and calculus, and she knew other Clark School students would already have these classes under their belts.
“It was daunting to feel like I’d be starting at a disadvantage,” says Weinstein. “But the Clark School has so many resources for students, like tutoring at the Keystone Program, and I found that I was part of a very collaborative culture of people who were ready to help.”
As Weinstein began to realize that she would have the support she needed, she obtained another boost of confidence when she received notification that she had been awarded an A. James Clark Scholarship.
“Reducing the financial burden through this scholarship made my college dream more accessible,” says Weinstein.
Throughout the years, Weinstein found the encouragement and unity she needed at the Clark School, and in particular within the close-knit Department of Aerospace Engineering. During the final years of her undergraduate degree, Weinstein and several of her classmates decided to take that familial environment one step farther, founding the University of Maryland's chapter of Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics (WIAA).
“Because of the gender disparity, engineering can be intimidating for a lot of women,” she says. “The idea behind WIAA is to take away the stigma that women don’t belong, showing everyone that there is a community that can help you to foster growth and help break down stereotypes in the industry.”
These days, Weinstein is interning at NASA Langley Research Center’s Learn-to-Fly project, exploring efficient, real-time modeling and control techniques for rapid aircraft development. She is also in the second year of her master’s degree in aerospace engineering at UMD, taking courses remotely several times a week through the National Institute of Aerospace.
“I am so grateful for the Clark School and everything it has allowed me to accomplish,” says Weinstein. “As I continue my career, I look forward to staying involved with all of the wonderful things to come in UMD’s future.”