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Engineering Student Named Future Leader

Fidler to Attend Collegiate Forum

UMass Lowell student Allison Fidler
Allison Fidler

07/17/2011
By Edwin L. Aguirre

Allison Fidler, a junior in the Plastics Engineering Department, is among 43 students nationwide who have been named by the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) as this year’s Future Leaders. As a result, she will represent New England in the SWE Collegiate Leaders Forum to be held in Austin, Texas, in August.

Founded in 1950, the SWE is a non-profit educational and service organization that helps women achieve their full potential as engineers and leaders.

“There are approximately 11,000 collegiate members in the SWE, 220 of whom were nominated as Future Leaders,” says Fidler, who is president of UMass Lowell’s SWE Student Chapter. “So I’m very happy to be among those chosen by the organization. At the conference, I will receive leadership training, participate in professional development workshops and network with other collegiate leaders.”

A Natural Leader

“Allison has been very active and involved in SWE activities since she was a freshman,” says Linda Barrington, UMass Lowell’s SWE collegiate section adviser. “She coordinated outreach programs, including workshops for Girls Inc., ran the weekly SWE meetings and helped recruit students.”

Barrington says Fidler convinced Dean John Ting of the College of Engineering to sponsor nine students to attend the WE10 annual conference for women engineers in November in Orlando, Fla., and led students in raising funds to cover the cost of participating in the SWE Region F conference in March in Troy, N.Y.

“Allison also designed and took part in two activities in the service-learning booth at last year’s USA Science & Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C.,” says Barrington. “She is scheduled to co-present at a workshop during the WE11 conference in Chicago this October a paper entitled, ‘Helping Others: Attracting Girls to Engineering through Service-Learning.’ ”

Fidler is the recipient of multiple scholarships, including the Dean’s Scholarship and the Independent Alumni Scholarship, and does paid work at the various research labs on campus. This summer, she is an intern at the Illinois Tool Works’ Tech Center in Glenview.

“After graduation, I would like to get into research and development, perhaps in the medical industry,” she says.