SCIENCE + TECHNOLOGY

Hispanic engineering convention in SLC draws thousands

Nov 1, 2023, 2:40 PM

people at the shpe convention...

The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers convention is pictured in Salt Lake City on Nov. 1, 2023. (Caitlyn Johnston/KSL NewsRadio)

(Caitlyn Johnston/KSL NewsRadio)

SALT LAKE CITY — Thousands of people are gathering in Salt Lake City through the end of the week for a Hispanic engineering convention. And it’s said to be the biggest event ever for the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers national convention.

 

Hispanics in engineering

The convention brings together Hispanic students, professionals, companies and schools looking to recruit or make connections. The event’s website says attendees will be able to visit hundreds of booths sponsored by businesses. These range from Apple to Boeing, to British Petroleum.

Universities from around the country have also sent recruiters to talk to young engineers about enrolling in their graduate programs.

There are also contests, like the 3-minute thesis presentation for graduate students, and over 100 skill-building workshops that are open to everyone.

“Definitely the networking is the reason why I’m here,” said Eric Kemmer, a software engineer who flew to Salt Lake City from Orlando to attend. “I’m about a year into my job, but I was looking to maybe transition into a job with some other prospective companies. Notably, I’m looking at Tesla.”

Hispanics in STEM

The event isn’t just about Hispanics in engineering — shows another side of the tech industry with few people of color. According to a report from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, as much as 68% of the U.S. technology sector identified as white, and 8% identified as Hispanic.

“The amount of Hispanics that are in engineering and in the STEM field in general, you know we don’t see that often,” said Carla Jimenez, a student at Marquette University in Milwaukee. “So just being able to gather all together and to share the love of engineering [is] amazing to me.

“STEM is in every aspect of Salt Lake City’s vibrant fabric,” said Gov. Spencer Cox in a video on the event’s website. “We eagerly await your arrival, and look forward to showcasing the boundless opportunities and warm hospitality that define Salt Lake City and Utah.

The event runs today through Sunday, Nov. 5. Anyone interested in attending can visit the convention’s website to learn more.

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Hispanic engineering convention in SLC draws thousands