Miss STEM: Beauty and Brains

courtesy Raelyn Henderson

“Strength and honour are her clothing; And she shall rejoice in time to come.” Proverbs 31:25 Prayer and Discipline is all it takes for Raelyn Henderson to balance education alongside her social and personal life.

The engineering field is known to be a male dominant field. However, for Southern University Senior Mechanical Engineering major, Raelyn Henderson, those are just words. She has taken the major and engineering field and made it her own. For a young black woman in a male dominant field this is big news.

Just in the past year Raelyn has received several awards such as the Ebony X OLAY HBCU Stem Queen, Miss Pinchback, Miss Honors College, and even chosen to represent the school in the 2022 SXSW HBCU Battle of the Brains team.

Raelyn has had several moments to truly be proud of, however, according to Henderson her proudest moment is, “representing Southern on a national level and becoming a role model for younger black girls in stem.”

When looking back at why she chose the illustrious Southern University, Raelyn said, “Southern University feels like home and there is nowhere else that I’d rather be.” To future engineers, especially black women, she says, “Do it! Don’t be afraid. God would not have put this vision inside of you for you not to use it.” Raelyn’s goal is to create and inspire HBCU students through her journeys and future endeavors. She sees the talent of the young people and just wants to create a solid pipeline for future HBCU students.

Although she makes this life look easy, there are rough times that everyone goes through. Raelyn stays motivated by remembering her why. “I love engineering and seeing more diversity in the field excites me to open those doors for others. Engineering makes life easier whether it is the simplicity of tying your shoe to the complication of putting someone in space. There are endless possibilities in engineering and complacency is seldom.

Monica Brown Challenger once said, “It’s important to know that struggle does not mean failure.” Congratulations are in order for Raelyn. We are all very proud of you and looking forward to what’s next in line for you.

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