"XCITE"ing future engineers
If you had asked Terrica Green as a high school freshman if she would consider pursuing a career as an engineer, she may have been quick to dismiss the idea. Today, however, Green is on track to do just that, having just finished her co-op term as a refining intern at Marathon Petroleum Corporation’s (MPC’s) refinery in Garyville, Louisiana.
Green credits her inspiration to pursue engineering to a weeklong experience she had at Louisiana State University’s (LSU’s) eXploration Camp Inspiring Tomorrow’s Engineers (XCITE) program. XCITE was developed by LSU with the goal of inspiring young women to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields. MPC has helped by providing a refinery tour for the past eight years and participating in the industry luncheon.
“In high school, I had a friend who was more ahead of college thinking than I was,” Green recalls. “I didn’t even want to be an engineer at the time, but I decided to go to XCITE with her. That really opened my eyes to the possibilities that an engineering career would have.”
Green’s experience wasn’t just memorable. In fact, it was the turning point in her career path.
“Having the opportunity to spend time with college women and see how engineers contribute to our world was really inspiring,” she said. And while she ultimately chose to attend Texas A&M University instead of LSU, her XCITE experience was a factor in drawing her back to a co-op term at the Garyville refinery.
“It’s fantastic that MPC puts in the effort every year to host students like me,” she said. “Touring the refinery and connecting with successful women in the field is an experience I’ll never forget.”