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Rising Stars: Meet Kristen Antosh

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kristen Antosh.

Hi Kristen, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
My name is Kristen Antosh and I’m an engineer that has always had a love for writting!  To understand my story, let’s travel back to the summer before my senior year in high school. At that time, I was narrowing in on universities and I was pretty sure that I wanted to major in journalism. I wrote for the newspaper of my high school, often wrote editorial comments to my local newspaper, and I was even part of an Explorers program with one of the large local TV news stations in my hometown. I loved writing. But I also loved science.

Then, my dad (an engineer) approached me about a Summer Engineering Camp at my local university (now my college alma mater) for high school girls. I really hadn’t considered engineering until then. And I honestly didn’t know what engineering was, so I decided to check it out. The week was filled with cool science experiments and challenges as well as visits to manufacturing facilities and interviews with engineers that worked at those companies. I was so excited about all of the opportunities available in engineering! After that week, I knew I wanted to be an engineer. I truly felt that with a degree in engineering, I could change the world.

A few years later, I received my bachelor’s degree in Materials Science and Engineering and an exciting 10-year career in industry as a Quality Engineer followed. Not long after our first daughter was born, I knew that I wanted the opportunity to be home with our children. So, I embarked on a new challenge as a stay-at-home parent, which I like to call ‘momgineering’. Naturally, with my background, I was totally absorbed in my daughters’ innate curiosity about the world and totally embraced it with fun science activities!

As my daughters grew, I began reading studies that said one of the main reasons girls and young women do not choose Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math fields (academic success and interest aside) is because of their confidence level compared to male counterparts. I also began reflecting on my career path in a male-dominated field (per HBR.org, only about 13% of engineers working are female). I felt inclined to start my own platform to help educate, empower, and inspire parents to make the STEAM fields exciting and fun for their young children (specifically young girls). I wanted children to discover their interests and develop confidence in STEAM fields early so that they would not feel intimidated later on in school. So, my blog “Momgineering the Future” was born.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
I love writing and creating, and I love working with our children on science and math-related activities. In those aspects, this journey has been a smooth road, but there have certainly been challenges along the way. The challenges I’ve faced have been learning to write more creatively and less technical, building a website for the first time, making new connections in an industry I was not part of previously, and learning how to use ever-changing social media tools and editing software for photos and videos. And, of course, when my children were younger, it was a challenge to carve out the time in the day to dedicate to my writing. I’ve challenged myself in ways I never imagined, but it was all worth it when I was offered my first freelance writing opportunity and was published for the first time.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I’m a freelance writer passionate about bringing the love of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM) to children. I have a strong interest in sharing STEAM concepts within the young child and elementary school community currently, as I’m a mother to two young girls. I have an engineering education and worked in manufacturing for more than 10 years before becoming a stay-at-home mother. I feel that my background in engineering is unique for a writer. Most engineers that I know don’t like writing. I have freelanced for local publications like Northeast Ohio Parent magazine and I am also a contributing writer to the Great Lakes Science Center. I like to write informative, educational, and engaging STEM content that is family oriented in nature.

Are there any books, apps, podcasts, or blogs that help you do your best?
My family is truly my number one reason for continuing to pursue this hobby/passion. Without their encouragement or support, I would not be where I am today. Specifically, my children are the primary inspiration behind everything that I write about, and my husband, also an engineer, is always there to help challenge me when I need it. They help me live my best life. I have also been inspired by the many STEAM activities all around Northeast Ohio at local museums and park systems. Through my blogging, I met a small supportive community of women engineers turned stay-at-home moms that are now writers and bloggers themselves across the country.  Some of them are She Loves Science, Engineering Emily, and From Engineer to Stay at Home Mom.  We love bouncing ideas off of one another and supporting each other.

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