Episode 9 Elissa Matthews -- Math Nerd who made it all work -- career, family, and a lot more!

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Elissa would never call herself this, but she truly is a bit of a Renaissance woman. In spite of parents who were less than supportive (and a mother who was mentally ill), Elissa modeled herself and learned from other wonderful family members like her strong grandmother. She forged her own path and thrived in spite of the fact that she was the lone Jewish kid at her school, and only the 2nd female math major at her college. Even at work at Bell Labs, the men greatly outnumbered the women at first. Restless, she left Bell Labs and found her way to Australia where she had adventures doing varied jobs that included bartending at a strip bar and being an underwater model for an Italian film company!
Returning to the U.S. for a family situation, she decided to stay and enrolled at Rutgers, where she met her husband Kim. She ended up back at Bell Labs and enjoyed a long career there and at AT&T/Lucent. Kim and Elissa raised two sons, Graham and Ian. Elissa currently runs a comm dept. for an engineering firm and is still having fun, which is one of her requirements of work!
We didn't even cover her side career as a novelist! But you can check out her writing at www.epmatthews.com.
Elissa has always been a kind and supportive friend to me, and always generous with her co-workers. I loved learning a little more about her and I find her advice to young women (and young men too) very helpful:
1. Shed the negative, train yourself to do this by repetition.
2. Don't always believe what others say about who you are. You know who you really are. Remember that.
3. After the structure of school and homework and all the planned activities and built-in deadlines that young people have, starting a career can feel like being set adrift. Learn to make your own structure and schedule, and find what you really enjoy doing and do more of that!
Slight warning: The "F" word is said twice in this episode and boobs/tits are mentioned.
THANK YOU FOR LISTENING!
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Original music, "Saturday Sway," by Brendan Talian

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