- The Washington Times - Friday, January 14, 2000

Forget the English major and take up electrical engineering, say three female supervisors at Intel, the world's largest maker of computer chips and semiconductors. It's a new world for them in high-tech, a field that is open to women as never before.

Carmen Egido

Having two children has not stopped Carmen Egido, 41, from attaining a high position at Intel Corp.'s Hillsboro, Ore., plant. Mrs. Egido, director and general manager of the applications and content architecture lab at Intel, oversees about 150 people in the advanced tech lab.
She stays continually connected to her two children, as she believes children benefit when they "have a continuous background presence of their mother." To buy more time with them, she relies on Web sites for her grocery shopping.
She is especially interested in developing technology that "enables women to stay connected to their family continuously all day." How is this done? Through cellular phones, pagers, telecommuting and "nanny cameras" for mothers.
At work, "We study people's behavior and how they live," she says. "We find things that aren't well supported by technology and [solving that] is our business."
The high-tech field is becoming more mature as women bring another perspective to the field. "You increasingly see women taking fairly senior positions in the 'dot-com' world," she says. "It is fast paced. You have to grit your teeth and bear it. I believe if you have a firm goal and are willing to work hard, anything is attainable."

Kirby Dyess

An Intel Corp. vice president specializing in mergers and acquisitions of companies, Kirby Dyess says that "the line between the professional and personal life almost doesn't exist."
Ms. Dyess, 53, acknowledges that both needs exist 24 hours a day. However, opportunities in high-tech careers are "incredible" now, she says, not to mention the "excellent salaries." The average salary for a female college graduate going into computer or electrical engineering is $45,000, according to surveys.
Ms. Dyess also urges women to join the high-tech field because "Tech companies tend to be more forward-looking. They are more flexible.
"The competitors are always at your heels, so they need results. That's why they don't care whether you're male or female as long as you can produce results."
She says technology jobs are flexible enough to have a successful professional and personal life, though it takes a lot of organization. What's important in this field, she adds, are results, not the number of hours that someone works.

Diane Bryant

As a young girl, Diane Bryant did not know what an engineer was, nor whether there were opportunities for her. She did know that she was good in math and science.
Today Ms. Bryant is the project manager for the Microprocessor Products Group at Intel Corp.'s Santa Clara, Calif., headquarters. "People tell me that I'm not what they expected in an engineer," she says. "But they don't realize that this is a very diverse field right now."
Although the number of women in engineering is relatively low, "I know there are lots of talented women out there," says the 37-year-old. "It is an incredibly rewarding field where you'll have tangible impact on technology each day."
For women who are exploring this career field, Ms. Bryant says they would have to know and desire a fast-moving, intense job where there is continuous change. "Every day is a different day," she says.
She did all of her Christmas shopping through Web sites this past year. "It's tricky to balance this career and family, but I wouldn't give up either one," she says.
Her husband is also in a high-tech career and they have a 3-year-old daughter. She and her husband split their duties straight down the middle and they just about get everything done. "Where there's a will, there's a way," she says.

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