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WOMEN OF COLOR


Gulfstream Electrical Engineer Juggles busy life
By Gale Horton Gay
Jun 26, 2014, 01:31

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Jennifer Sesay, electrical systems engineer, Gulfstream Aerospace Corp

Long before she became a professional engineer, Jennifer Sesay took a courageous leap of faith. She moved from her home country of Sierra Leone to Wisconsin to attend college. She knew that if she stayed in Freetown, she had little hope of an accomplished and fulfilling life. The young woman with dreams of achievement came to the United States without any family or friends but with more than enough ambition and drive.

A decade later Sesay is an electrical systems engineer with Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. in Savannah. Her job involves supporting the development and certification of some of the avionics systems on Gulfstream aircraft.
Sesay, 29, said her life now is fairly well balanced with challenging work, a fiancé she plans to marry in upcoming months, regular exercise, commitments to her church and community and adequate rest.

However, that wasn’t always the case.

Sesay recalled a time a couple of years ago she threw too much of herself into work and was not mindful of achieving better balance.

“There were times I would go home and dream about work,” said Sesay. “I was burning the candle at both ends.”
Now she rarely brings her laptop home and has made a conscious effort to focus on work while at the office and focus on everything else when she’s away from the job.






The wake-up call came after she got sick and couldn’t shake it. After repeated doctor visits, her physician suggested that her symptoms might be stress related.

Sesay said that assessment caused her to question herself.

“I started looking inside. I asked what I am doing,” she said. “Maybe I need some help delegating. Maybe I am carrying too much myself. Maybe I don’t need to go to all these meetings.”

She decided to pump the brakes a bit at work and slow down. Sesay also made a courageous decision to go to management at her company and ask for help in prioritizing projects and delegating some tasks to others. She got the support she needed.

Now she’s more relaxed. Outside of work, Sesay is involved with her church and volunteers in the community in addition to planning her upcoming nuptials and visiting with her fiancé’s family in Virginia. She tries to return to Sierra Leone each year at Christmas.

As for keeping balance in her life, Sesay sees progress.

“I think I have gotten better the older I get,” she said.
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Promoting STEM

The development of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers is integral to America's advancement. Career Communications Group publications--US Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine, Hispanic Engineer & Information Technology magazine and Women of Color magazine--offer a blueprint for continued growth and success in STEM fields by highlighting progress and people at all stages of the STEM pipeline; from the college student taking his first engineering courses to the senior executive managing the projects that will change the ways we live.

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A Unique Company Providing Unique Opportunities Career Communications Group, Inc. was founded 25 years ago with a unique mission: To promote significant achievement in science, technology, engineering and mathematics professional careers. We are a socially conscious diversity media company that recognize the mandate to inspire and promote excellence in our youth by telling the stories of the thousands of unheralded people striving for success. The people we reach provide top employers a unique opportunity to fulfill their mission of hiring this country’s most promising talent. We offer inspiring magazines, award-winning syndicated television programs and national conferences to reach hundreds of thousands of students and professionals who share these traits: A determination to succeed and the commitment to be personally responsible for that success. Their attitude of self-empowerment creates a unique hiring environment for companies and other organizations seeking top talent to diversify and strengthen their workforce.