Phoebe Tengdin ’13

Name: Phoebe Tengdin ’13

Current Title/Profession: Graduate student in electrical engineering

City: Boulder, Colorado

Major: Physics

Minor: Mathematics

What was your first job after MHC?: Went directly into a PhD program at the University of Colorado at Boulder

Favorite class/professor and why: Analytical Mechanics with Mark Peterson, and Differential Equations with Matt Noonan. Both of these classes focused on the beauty of mathematics when used to solve extremely hard physical problems. I have used the skills and confidence that I built in these classes many times in my career as a researcher.

Talents and/or passions discovered at MHC: I discovered my love for physics and engineering, and also became a serious competitive distance runner through participation in the cross-country and track teams.

What do you value most about your liberal arts education?: The confidence that I built by working on difficult problems until I found the answers.

Why is a women’s education still relevant today?: Many of the higher income/higher tech fields of today’s world are still strongly male dominated. Physics and electrical engineering are a relevant example for me. Learning physics in an all-female environment was an amazing opportunity. I was able to develop my thinking skills as a physicist without the pressures that a male-dominated workplace inevitably brings. I think that America needs more women’s-college graduates to tip the balance in our favor at the higher end of the tech industry.

What do you want the world to know about MHC?: It is a wonderful community, really focused on helping the students build their chosen careers. With enough determination, you can really go anywhere from Mount Holyoke.

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