Denise Bailey, or “Seven,” as her friends call her, is a welder, artist and instructor who forged her own path as a woman in the trades. As a woman in a field that is mostly made up of men, Denise has experienced a lot of discrimination and underestimation. However, that did not stop her from perfecting her skills in order to solidify her opportunities as a talented creator.

Originally pursuing studio art while in school, Denise learned how to use metal as a medium for sculptures. Soon she was welding for many different organizations and companies, spanning from military products to trapeze equipment. Although she experienced some adversity when getting started in her field, her career blossomed because she did not give up on herself.

Now she uses her expertise to help students at Dunwoody College of Technology in pursuing their future career goals and to help them express their creativity. Denise finds it rewarding to teach welding classes to youth and to encourage them to build their own welding skills in order to succeed – and having a wide range of opportunities and projects available to her students makes her STEM career even more rewarding. When she’s not combining metals together, Denise likes to blend music and joy as a DJ. She’s another example of a STEM mentor who uses creativity in work and in life.

Want to keep the inspiration flowing? Check out additional profiles of Minnesota women in STEM careers.

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SciGirls is TPT’s National Science Foundation-funded program that engages girls (and boys!), families and educators nationwide around science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM. By combining an Emmy Award-winning PBS series, multiple websites, hands-on activities and professional development workshops, SciGirls reaches millions on-the-air, online and in communities, inspiring the next generation of STEM superstars.