Skip to content

Shannon Steiniger, QA & Systems Manager at Superior Tube, Wins Prestigious Industry Award

Thursday, December 2, 2021

Shannon Steiniger joined Superior Tube in June 2021, following successful engineering roles in the aerospace industry. Prior to arriving at the business, Shannon was awarded a prestigious STEP Ahead Emerging Leader Award from the Manufacturing Institute, recognising her innovation and engineering skills that led to significant time and cost savings for the company.

Here, Shannon talks about what the award means to her and why she is keen to encourage and support her fellow female engineers who are also striving for greatness.

Q. What do you enjoy the most about being a QA & Systems Manager at Superior Tube?

There are a lot of amazing moments in my role at Superior Tube. I am passionate about engineering because I get to work with so many enthusiastic and experienced people. We operate across so many different sectors, including medical, aerospace and defense. I love seeing the engineering skills and technical innovation that has gone into developing our products. Some of our tubes have even gone into space, which is very exciting! Every day is different and a chance to learn something new – and I love that!

Q. Your work in engineering has been recognised in a STEP Ahead Emerging Leader Award?

I actually won my STEP Ahead Emerging Leader Award through my previous position at a nearby elastomer manufacturing facility. The awards are sponsored through the Manufacturing Institute to recognise the achievements of women in manufacturing. They honor those who are actively making a difference in their companies, and can be nominated for an Honoree or Emerging Leader award. I was one of just 30 winners under the age of 30 chosen from across the entire US to be awarded an Emerging Leader accolade.

The project that I was working on at the time that led the company to nominate me for this award involved introducing and implementing a new automated visual inspection machine into our work – something that the company had never been involved in before. It helped reduce much of the previously manually time-consuming visual inspection work, giving the company back around 30,000 hours of capacity and about $1m a year. So, a pretty big success by any measure!

Q. Congratulations! When and where did you go to collect your award?

I attended a Women’s Leadership conference (which was another perk of winning the award) and gala in Washington DC in early November, where I was presented with my STEP Ahead Award by the awarding body’s board of advisors. It was a very special occasion and I felt proud and honoured by the recognition. I got to meet so many inspiring and hard-working women at the event. The award itself is an attractive crystal trophy and I will probably bring it into work so that it can sit on my desk, and I can enjoy seeing it every day.

Q. Tell us a bit more about the Step Ahead Awards and why they are so important.

The awards recognize women in science, technology, engineering, and production careers who are leaders within their companies. Getting this award further allows mentorship and networking opportunities to inspire the next generation of female talent. The STEP Ahead Awards have allowed more than 1,000 award-winning women across the country the ability to showcase the abundant and rewarding opportunities the manufacturing industry has to offer, no matter what role they play within their companies.

Q. How are you encouraging more women to follow in your footsteps into an engineering career?

There is still a big gender gap in manufacturing and engineering. I definitely feel that as a woman in the profession, I have a responsibility to mentor and encourage younger women who want to do the same thing as me in the future.

I have participated in the Society of Women’s Chartering Horizons and Opportunities in Careers in Engineering and Science program. We ran STEAM events for female students at a local middle school, where we introduced them to the main principles of science and engineering through participation in fun projects and activities. I loved their enthusiasm and found it very rewarding. I am also keen to try to help my fellow female engineers wherever I can, and to play my part in expanding the number of female workers we have here at Superior Tube.