Engineering Technology Professor at PBSC Proves her Mettle as an Engineering Advocate

‘Women in STEM’ has been a defining theme of many FLATE initiatives. The FLATE Focus has served as a platform in highlighting the distinguished credentials and professional portfolios of several women, both in industry and education, who have made their mark as a trailblazer, paying it forward, for many more women to be engaged and assume leadership roles in STEM. Back in 2014 we started a series, highlighting a distinguished panel of educators within the consortium of colleges in Florida offering the A.S. degree in Engineering Technology (ET). We are resurrecting this effort, and starting a mini-series focusing on new faculty that have joined the ET faculty ranks.

As part of the kick off to our mini-series on new ET faculty, featured in this article is an

educator who has played a remarkable role in educating the next generation of high-tech workers, and inspired a whole new generation of women engineers. Professor Roxana Melendez is a Colombian electrical engineer and engineering project management specialist with a master’s degree in electrical engineering. She is also currently a Ph.D. candidate at Florida Atlantic University. She became a new full-time faculty for the new Engineering Technology program at Palm Beach State College (PBSC).

As a professor at PBSC, Melendez continues being an engineering patroness and advocate since her energy and dedication towards engineering are undoubtedly her best reference. She has been working in the engineering field since she was twenty-one years old, teaching Engineering Technology (ET) courses since 2008. On the industry side of the continuum, Melendez had the opportunity to support many technical personnel and other engineers with field training for projects related to electrical engineering.

Power Systems, Renewable Energy Systems, Electrical Facilities, Electrical Circuits, Introduction to Engineering, Technologies for Power Generation, Electrical Substations, Electronics and Digital Circuits are among the courses and topics Professor Melendez teaches. At PBSC some of these courses are a key component in the academic and professional growth of her students “since the material and hands-on practices covered in class are akin to the current state-of-the-art engineering and technology standards in industry.” Professor Melendez describes herself as a strong woman whose passion and excitement for engineering is evident through her classes.

Melendez describes herself as an “Engineering Advocate.” She is credited for designing and
conducting her courses to be informative while engaging and encouraging students to think critically. As an educator she is always concerned on how to improve her classes and to professionally connect with students’ interests in engineering technology areas by offering mentorship, challenging students, and inspiring them to strive for continuous self-improvement. Because of these aspects she has found a great fit in her position at PBSC’s engineering technology program and its curriculum. “At PBSC I also have found great support from other professors and deans, we work together towards student success” Melendez said.

The PBSC ET program currently offers specializations in Renewable Energy Systems and Electronics and Advanced Manufacturing. You can connect with professor Melendez at melender@palmbeachstate.edu, or contact her at 561-2075727. You can also visit the Engineering Technology program at PBSC at www.palmbeachstate.edu/programs/EngineeringTechnology, or visit the Made in Florida ET page at http://madeinflorida.org/engineering-technology-degree and/or or contact Dr. Marilyn Barger, executive director of FLATE at barger@fl-ate.org.