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Rachel Borchers Named SWE Distinguished New Engineer
November 9, 2016
Girl STEM Power: Rachel (Young) Borchers (bottom, right) organized an event this fall to get Girl Scouts in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area interested in STEM. She has spent the past decade as a STEM advocate with Boston Scientific and the Society of Women Engineers.
After being inspired to become an engineer through an eighth-grade career aptitude test, alumna Rachel (Young) Borchers has become a medical device developer who is inspiring young girls throughout Minnesota to become future engineers.
As a regional leader of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE), the 2006 chemical engineering graduate organized “Wow! That’s Engineering” and “Spark! Slime! Speed!” outreach programs that taught Girl Scouts the principles of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). A “Design Your Future” program, aligning within the Girl Scouts’ Product Designer Badge, has become a staple of STEM youth educational programming in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. She also has developed a partnership between SWE and Girl Scouts in the Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valley areas, with a focus on delivering STEM programming across all age ranges.
These STEM promotional efforts and Borchers’ career achievements were recognized as she received SWE’s Distinguished New Engineer Award, along with 2005 electrical engineering alumna Rebecca (Johnson) Reck of Flint, Mich, at the organization’s 2016 national conference.
Borchers is a principal supplier quality engineer for Boston Scientific Corporation’s cardiac rhythm management division in Arden Hills, Minn. She focuses on developing chemical and electronic sub-components for use in long-term implantable, life sustaining devices. One recent project is an innovative new primary chemical battery for medical devices that Boston Scientific launched in 2014.
As a leader in Boston Scientific’s supplier quality community, Borchers has taken on increased responsibility for driving quality system efficiencies and business process improvements, supporting a divisional team of more than 40 engineers, and a global team of more than 100 engineers. She also has worked on projects with teams in Japan, spent a portion of her career on an international assignment in Ireland, and now is pursuing a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management.
“I have been challenged with numerous technical projects and leadership positions consistently since my days at Rose-Hulman,” Borchers says. “With each challenge, both at work and in SWE, I have continued to strengthen my communication, interpersonal and leadership skills.”
She sought out SWE as a way to become acclimated to people and businesses after moving to the Twin Cities area. Borchers became instrumental in SWE’s Minnesota Section outreach efforts, and recently finished serving as the section’s president after being vice president in 2015. She has been involved in developing strategic planning, youth outreach and professional development for the organization and its members, which have grown to include more than 500 engineers.
Borchers developed her interests in SWE and its outreach programs at Rose-Hulman, participating in the student chapter’s Women Exploring Engineering and Girl Scout events, and serving as a Homework Hotline tutor. She also hosted programs on the campus radio station.
Outside of SWE, Borchers also represents engineering and promotes STEM within the Girl Scout community. A Girl Scout troop leader since 2010, she plans to be a mentor to the girls through high school.
“I encourage the girls to try new things and pursue their interests. They are learning to be active participants in their community, and role models for younger girl scouts,” says Borchers.
At Boston Scientific, Borchers has regularly been involved in community STEM events, including being a booth leader at STEM Day activities, participating in school STEM career day events and job shadowing, developing STEM kits/tools, and being a community volunteer.