Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Alumna Blazes an Engineering Trail at College
- Celebrating a decade of Solve for Tomorrow success with alumna Shannon Stever. As a 2016 National Finalist, Florida International University offered her and her teammates full scholarships.
- Today, Stever is in her third year studying civil engineering at FIU – and working an internship at a structural and civil engineering firm.
- Watch Shannon Stever’s #SamsungSolve story and how she is continuing her STEM career path.
“The Samsung Solve for Tomorrow contest empowered me as a young woman to study engineering,” said Shannon Stever, an engineering student at Florida International University and a 2016 national finalist in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow STEM contest.
Shannon’s team from Northeast High School, in Oakland Park, Florida designed designed technology to detect rip currents and warn swimmers of nearby danger, which earned the team a berth in the 2016 Samsung Solve for Tomorrow final competition. While they didn’t walk away with a grand prize, they did win $50,000 in technology for their school and along with all the intangible gifts Stever said she acquired from participating in the contest – confidence, purpose, collaboration – she also seized on a surprise offer of a four year scholarship to Florida International University that the institution had extended to select students on the Solve for Tomorrow team.
“At first I felt out of place as one of only a few women in my department, but I know I’m here for a reason. I just hope that young girls feel inspired, encouraged and unafraid to go after what they love to do,” Stever said.
Now, she’s pivoting between her engineering classes and her internship at Eastern Engineering Group, which specializes in civil and structural engineering.
“Internships are great because they give you hands-on experience in the field, and you get to learn engineering outside of the classroom,” Stever said. She’s encouraged subsequent Solve for Tomorrow contestants, too. Stever was the alumni mentor to a 2019 Solve team from Owensville High School, in Owensville, Missouri, which went on to win a grand prize for its intruder lock, a simple-to-use door lock that quickly secures a classroom during a safety event at school.
Team Owensville, and Stever’s own Team Northeast, learned through participating in Solve for Tomorrow “what teamwork really means and what it takes to design and invent something from nothing,” she said.
“I’d wanted to work on global issues like poverty, hunger and clean water, and now I’ll do that with STEM. Engineering can really make a difference in people’s lives,” Stever said.
She applauded Samsung for helping students create innovative solutions for so many real-world issues. And she credits some incredible high school teachers with a mantra that has resonated with her ever since: Engineering is solving problems.
“Our lives are touched by engineering every day,” Stever said.