We had the good fortune of connecting with Chloe Gharios and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Chloe, what do you think makes you most happy? Why?
One thing that really makes me happy is seeing women in STEM thrive! My absolute passion is to show women and girls that STEM is for them, and that they do not have to conform to any stereotype to be successful. Seeing the community of women on social media being their true selves, showing up exactly as they are, and crushing their dreams makes me so so happy. I am also extremely passionate about K-12 outreach, and showing young girls that they can be whatever they want to be. Doing STEM outreach and seeing little girl’s faces light up doing science and engineering, and picturing themselves as future engineers is one of the best feelings. I once went to a kindergarten class with another female engineer to do activities with the students. At the end of the presentation and activity, a little girl exclaimed, “that was so fun, and I thought the engineers would be two boys, but it was two girls!” Reactions like that, and showing kids they can be anything is what truly makes me happy!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Today, I am a civil engineer working in the power industry, working on amazing projects to provide safe and reliable electricity in southern California, and to help the industry move towards a more sustainable future. I earned a bachelors degree in civil engineering from California State University Fullerton, and a masters degree at the University of Southern California in Engineering Management. Getting to where I am professionally was definitely not easy, but it made me who I am today. One of my hardest challenges to overcome was having heart surgery during college. I was studying civil engineering and was on scholarship as a division 1 soccer player, and one day I collapsed during training. I found out that I needed heart surgery, in the middle of a tough engineering semester. I even had a professor who told me I should just drop out, because I would never recover. I absolutely did not listen, and I am so glad that I did not!!! Going through obstacles and getting through them, made me who I am today, and it is one of the huge reasons I decided to become a digital creator and share my story. I wanted women to see that no obstacle can stop them from their dreams, and not one can tell them what they can and cannot do.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There are so many amazing places in LA! Here are some of my favorites!! Restaurants: Mercado Los Angeles, Colori Kitchen, Malibu Farms, Bote Bars: Perch, La Descarga, Little Easy, Giannini at NoMad Los Angeles Places to go: Griffith Observatory, Heritage Square Museum, Gamble House, The Getty, Malibu Wines The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My parents are the true reason my message and brand is what it is today. I grew up being told each and every day that I can be whatever I set my mind to. My father showed me that engineering was not just an industry for the boys by encouraging me and sharing his career with me. He never once let me think it wasn’t a career for me just because I was a girl. My mom always taught me to never be intimidated by a “man’s world.” When I wanted to play basketball, and there were no girls’ teams, she signed me up for the boys’ league. She told me, “You are not a girl basketball player. You are just a basketball player. You can be just as good as anyone on that court.” That has stuck with me my entire life, and truly influences my message of #stompingoutstereotypes, and being true to yourself and not succumbing to any societal box.
Other: Clubhouse: @chloeengineer