#PeopleofSTEAM: Meet Erin

A mechanical engineer by trade, Erin spent many years at NASA and MIT before starting her own business in 2023. Her company, STEAM Power Media, serves as a translator between scientists and engineers and the public. Through digital media she shares STEAM experiences with the world. She works with companies, museums, and science organizations to help share their work and research through articles, videos and social media. Erin enjoys being able to constantly learn and experience a wide variety of science each day. When discussing what it’s like working with innovators, scientists and engineers she said, “It feels really meaningful to help the world learn more about them.”

Keep reading to learn more about Erin’s experience in STEAM and how she shares it with others.


FIRST Staff: How do you use STEAM skills in your everyday work/life?

Erin: I use SolidWorks and 3D printers for some of my creations, like when I worked on projects for Lulzbot and SolidWorks directly. Although I’m not working on engineering design projects most days, I take advantage of many of the skills and knowledge I learned while pursuing my degree. Being able to “speak engineer” is super helpful to learn more about topics, and better communicate with the experts I’m working with. As a hobby, I love using STEAM skills to learn to repair pinball machines as well!

FIRST Staff: What is the hardest part of your job?

Erin: It’s probably the balance of work! In addition to actually working on the science communication products, there’s a lot of work on the business side of things. Tracking money, working on coordinating what the next project will be, balancing the number of hours each week committed to each client, etc. And I always want to make sure to have time to work on some of my own personal science communication projects too.

FIRST Staff: Can you share your thoughts on the impact of your personal/professional work in STEAM?

Erin: It’s been really incredible to see people get inspired to pursue STEAM because of the articles, videos, and content I put out. To have people directly reach out and say I helped them figure out what they wanted to do with their career is amazing. And on top of that, seeing people learn about a new area of science or a topic they weren’t aware of because of one of my projects is just so fulfilling.


FIRST Staff: Who is a “Person of STEAM” who inspires you?

Erin: Oh gosh there are so many! I have to give a shoutout to Emily Calandrelli though. She is the epitome of expert science communication, advocacy, and making STEAM accessible to the next generation. She is paving the way for so many women in science communication, while taking real action towards making life better for women in aerospace.

FIRST Staff: If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, what would it be?

Erin: You will find the most success in your career when you find and make opportunities that are at the intersection of your passions. Do not feel like you have to just be a journalist or an engineer. There are so many career paths that combine all the things that you love. Seek those out because that is where you will be most successful and enjoy your work.

FIRST Staff: Do you have a message you want to share for students who are participating in FIRST today?

Erin: As you are participating in FIRST, pay attention to the parts of the process that spark the most joy for you. FIRST gives you the chance to try so many different things from engineering design to manufacturing to electronics. Look for opportunities to try all parts of the process and see what you like. FIRST is such an incredible opportunity. Have a blast making something you are proud of as a team.

Are you a person of STEAM? Share your story with #PeopleofSTEAM on social media or send us your story at marketing@firstinspires.org.