It was a cold and rainy Thursday afternoon as I sat in my bedroom looking out the window, watching the rain fall from the sky. Fortunately I did not have to go outside and deal with the harsh weather. Instead I had the opportunity to attend “Women in the Workplace Breaking Barriers” event with guest speaker Nye Jones. The event was presented by career services, the office of student activities in collaboration with WOCSI.
I eagerly logged onto Zoom to learn more about Women of Change Success Inspiration, (WOCSI) hearing from guest speaker Nye Jones about inclusion and diversity in the workplace, and the presentation of the “2021 PCCC Woman of the Year Award.”
Before guest speaker Nye Jones presented, the counsel members of WOCSI Ashely Diaz, Lija Begum, and Kelly J. Franco gave a brief rundown on some of their upcoming workshops and events.
When Nye Jones arrived she discussed her job at WSP and what it entails. “WSP is an engineering firm that focuses on sustainability, resilience, and climate change,” Nye said. “Some of their work has included designing rest stops and high speed railroad trains. I work in equity and social justice and makes sure projects are equitable and fair.”
Nye, who is the President of the National Diversity Council’s Tri-State Advisory Board, is a certified Diversity Professional, active member of the WSP Inclusion and Diversity Council, while leading the training sub-committee.
Following a brief Q and A with Nye Jones, it was time to give out the “2021 PCCC Woman of the Year Award.”
Jay Marie Martinez who was last year’s winner, presented Ravyn John, an Electronic Engineer Technology major, with the “2021 Woman of the Year Award.” Ravyn also serves as the President of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, mentors at the STEM College Found Program, and is a member of WOCSI, the Astronomy Club, and Bridges to Baccalaureate.
Upon receiving the award Ravyn John gave her acceptance speech.
“I would like to thank those that nominated me, career services, WOCSI and student activities. When I received the email on being selected to be the 2021 Woman of The Year I thought to myself ‘did I really earn this? Or did they mix up my email with someone else?’ In all seriousness, I am happy to be selected for the Woman of the Year Award. I would like to give acknowledgment to the other nominees because they too are strong, independent, and inspiring women who have done amazing things in their communities. It is an honor for me to be considered Woman of the Year.”
“In high school I maintained a GPA of 3.5 but was sad to find out that I could not qualify for the NJ Stars program because I am an IEP (Individualized Education Program) student… throughout elementary school I received speech therapy to help enunciate words. Even though speech therapy helped improve my speech, I still felt hopeless because I thought I was not smart like everyone else… I didn’t want my limitations to differ with my transformation in becoming a person who is determined and capable of achieving success in their career and in college endeavors. I became involved in community outreach programs extracurricular activities that allowed me to utilize my home town of Paterson New Jersey… My true potential fully emerged when I became involved in Phi Theta Kappa chapter at PCCC… My mission in life is not merely to survive but to thrive. Thank You.”