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Mikaela Myrin

Mikaela Myrin
Breaking the gender barrier in engineering

In a mechanical engineering course comprised of mostly men, Mikaela Myrin, 19, doesn't seemed fathomed or intimidated by her male counterparts.

Raised in the small Texas town of Pleasanton, Myrin is one of a few females enrolled in the College of Engineering at the University of Texas at San Antonio. She fell for the subject in high school, while taking math and science classes. Almost always, she was the only girl.

"So many girls have already completely written off stem by the time their eighth graders. Going into engineering I thought there would be a lot more females but there isn't," she said.

That didn't hold her back from majoring in the field and pursing her interests in oil and gas and HVAC at UTSA.

"I've always had an interest in math and science," said Myrin, a scholarship recipient. "I hope to find a career in engineering where I could make people's lives easier or better."

For Myrin, a middle child with four siblings scholarship support is very important to her. With only a few weeks away from starting her junior year of high school an electrical fire destroyed her family home. Declared a complete loss the fire left her family homeless and forced to start over.

With her parents piecing together what was lost, financial support from her family was limited. So after being admitted into the College of Engineering Myrin decided to apply for any scholarship she fit the criteria. Being a stand out student and an avid volunteer in her community led Myrin to land several scholarships.

Today she is a sophomore and continues to apply for scholarships every year. She said she is thankful to the donors for allowing her the opportunity pursue her passions.

Donors like the Ewing Halsell Foundation, USAA Foundation and the San Antonio Pipeliners Association.

"Without the support of donors I would not be able to go to school. When our house burned down my dad got really hurt and my parents had to use their savings to pay for his medical bills. It means the world to me that the donors put their faith in me," said Myrin, who is active in several student-led engineering organizations including the Texas Society of Professional Engineers and the American Society of Heating Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers.

This summer, Myrin hopes to land an internship, after graduation she plans on searching for a job in the oil and gas or HVAC industry.

"I hope to one day contribute to society by engineering something that impacts people and the way they go about their day." said Myrin.

 - Yvonne Zamora Byrd

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