Erika Anderson is a mechanical engineer and an ASTC IF/THEN Ambassador.
Our Meet the Engineer series features the work of IF/THEN Ambassadors in engineering fields. Each profile shares stories, videos, activities, and free downloads, all designed to inspire girls to pursue STEM. The Works Museum is a proud recipient of an IF/THEN Gender Equity Grant.
WHY SHE BECAME AN ENGINEER
Hey, I’m Erika Anderson and I’m a Mechanical Engineer. Now, I really wish I could tell you that that’s what I always dreamed of being since I was a little girl but the truth is, growing up, I didn’t even know what an engineer was! I was told an engineer was a train driver. But what I did know is that I had a passion for learning.
Most kids didn’t like school, but me, I loved learning something new every day. And I’ve always loved a good challenge so math was always my favorite. Can you imagine my excitement when during my senior year in high school while researching college majors, I finally learned there was an entire career field called engineering dedicated to applying math and science to solving real-world problems. Now here I am over a decade later, a Reliability Engineer, using those same skills to solve petrochemical challenges daily.
HOW SHE ENGINEERS
Atlanta native Erika Anderson is a self-proclaimed education enthusiast who graduated with honors with Bachelor’s degrees in Mathematics and Mechanical Engineering from Spelman College and Georgia Institute of Technology, respectively.
She has used her engineering expertise in many ways. She has served as a member of the National Society of Black Engineers’ executive board, analyzed data for NASA, performed flight data analysis at GE Aviation, and worked as a Mechanical Engineer at ExxonMobil – among many other things. She now applies her refinery experience and technical expertise to provide engineering support to ExxonMobil’s refineries and chemical plants all across the globe!
MORE ABOUT ERIKA
In addition to her engineering role, she has also had the pleasure of fulfilling her passion for service by serving as the Community Outreach Chair of ExxonMobil’s Black Employee Success Team. Inspired by a passion for education and love of music, Erika recently founded her own organization, The Math Lab, which offers an engaging alternative to traditional classroom and online teaching by presenting math lessons through a seamless combination of music and curriculum-based mathematics.