As a kid, Deema AL Namee enjoyed tinkering around the house and fixing things. It led her to target a career in engineering.
“I went for mechanical engineering for the wide range of jobs that would be available after college,” she says. “I knew that I liked working with my hands.” By the time she had earned her associate’s degree, she set her sights on the new Manufacturing Engineering Technology bachelor’s degree program. “I knew I wanted a bachelor’s degree, and once this major became available it was a clear choice for me.”
“One of the exciting parts is that I can do anything I want for work afterward,” she says. Deema grew up in Iraq and has lived in Vermont since 2008. “I hope to stay in Vermont because family is a big part of my life. Vermont is a great place to live.”
For Deema, the hands-on learning at Vermont Tech was a big factor in choosing the college. Plus she saw the class sizes are small and she’d get to know people well. Her biggest hands-on project so far has been to work on a team of four students to design and build a heavy-duty log cutter for a local forester. “We did CAD drawings, figured out parts and materials, and then put everything together within one semester,” she says.
Deema has also become wholeheartedly involved in student life at Vermont Tech. “I’ve lived on campus the whole time, and I’ve been an RA (resident assistant) for my sophomore and junior years. It’s a lot of fun to meet people and help them with what they need.”
In 2017 Deema was elected president of the student council, and she was selected to be a legislative intern in Montpelier for the Office of the Chancellor of Vermont State Colleges. “I like to get involved in many different things,” she admits. “If I’m excited about it I’ll get involved.”
In her senior year, Deema and several of her classmates participated in the regional competitions for SkillsUSA, a national conference where students like her can show off their technical skills and know-how. She and her team placed Gold in the regional Additive Manufacturing trials and got the chance to head to Nationals in the Summer of 2018. The National Skills & Leadership Conference will be held June 25-30, 2018 in Louisville, Kentucky.
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