Swathi Parthibha, an Edison resident and Middlesex County Academy Student, recently received the SWENext Global Innovator Award honoring her role in inspiring girls to pursue engineering and for her strong leadership skills.
Parthibha’s passion for engineering began with her interest in robotics, which led her to participate in FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics for 7 years. On top of this, she mentors a FIRST LEGO team and teaches at a STEM center located near her where she helps young students learn the fundamentals of robotics and programming.
“Growing up I was discouraged to pursue engineering because my interests, such as video games and coding, weren’t shared by other girls my age,” Parthibha said. “I don’t want any girl to feel this way, because by hiding these parts of my life I was essentially stripping away the uniqueness I possess. Because of my strong beliefs and passion for computer science, I constantly work toward getting more girls involved in STEM.”
At school, she challenges herself by taking difficult Electronic and Computer Engineering Technology courses while also being co-president of Middlesex County Academy’s chapter of the Technology Student Association. On top of this, she also dedicates her time to serving as the technology lead of the Student Leadership Committee at Junior Achievement of NJ.
Her latest accomplishment includes recently completing a research internship at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, where she generated a computer model for use in magnetic drug targeting. Her strong leadership skills and role in engineering are what makes her a great influence for young aspiring engineers and a great role model for women overall.
“SWENext is an opportunity for SWE to nurture our future generation of engineers, providing them with resources to help them learn more about engineering and exposing them to other women engineers who can help them along the way,” Randy Freedman, director of Student Programs at SWE, said in a prepared statement. “This is the fourth year of our SWENext Awards program, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the level of enthusiasm and commitment these girls already have for a future in engineering. Swathi Parthibha has been an exemplary role model in her community, and we are confident that with her passion for engineering, and her commitment to the community, she will do great things.”