Spotlight: Brandy Alger
What made you come to UTSA?
I wanted to get away from North Texas and started looking at other schools in Texas, which led me to San Antonio. I saw that UTSA had a great engineering program as well as a fantastic student life with multi-faceted resources.
There are so many things to do all the time that I always had something going on. Joining the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) as a freshman was a great choice because I was able to get a lot of mentorship from upper classmen as well as connections and networking opportunities that put me where I am today.
What degrees do you have from UTSA?
I have a bachelor of science and master of science degree in Electrical Engineering.
What do you do in the College of Engineering?
I am now the Assistant Director for Engineering Outreach. I recruit high school students for UTSA Engineering, talk to schools and communities about STEM, coordinate and run the COE Summer Camp and Engineering Living Learning Community (the on-campus engineering residence hall), put on seminars and tutoring services for current students, help students with questions about scholarships, internships, student life and pretty much everything else, mentor the 21 engineering student organizations, coordinate and run the STEM fest, and finally I make everybody’s day better (kidding, not kidding.)
Why did you stay after earning your degrees?
Every year I changed my idea of what I wanted to do after college. When I started I wanted to work on circuits, my sophomore year I wanted to do biomedical engineering research to help disabled people feel, see, hear, etc, my junior year was all about energy and helping third world countries with sustainability and renewable resources, my senior year I was sure that I wanted to do Teach For America (which I got to the final round of interviews) and my super senior year was devoted to making engineering education matter in the U.S. and how to get more minorities and women engaged in STEM.
Everything that I wanted to do had something in common; helping people and changing the world. Through the improvement of STEM education as well as motivating more women and minorities to pursue STEM careers, I could make the world a better place.
What is your favorite part of your job?
I love working with engineering students, I love helping them reach their goals, and I love helping high school students realize their potential in a technological predisposed society. I would do anything for our students, which is how I realized my real passion for STEM education.
I also really love the role models and mentors that I have had the pleasure of having in my life, who are all directly tied to the College of Engineering. I get really excited about coming into work and knowing that what I do makes a difference and that I have people who believe that too.