33: Manufacturing Aircraft Engines and SWE President – Jonna Gerken
Jonna Gerken earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial and Management Engineering and an MBA in Technology Development from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) and currently works at Pratt & Whitney managing manufacturing engineers.
She indicates that in the aviation environment they have to design and manufacture engine parts that can be built at high volumes greater than 100,000 and for 40+ years. There is a strong push to 3-D printing, but not all parts lend themselves to that technology.
For manufacturing engineers many have come in through mechanical and aerospace engineering as well as industrial engineering – the key is problem solving. She is fired up about all the new technology in the manufacturing area and making parts out of materials that did not exist until recently.
There is also a myth out there that all engineers are really good at math and science. There are many engineers that were challenged by math and science but worked hard at it an therefore became successful – the key is to work hard and have the proper mindset.
One of Jonna’s habits that helps her be successful is to be organized.