Ping director on quest for greater diversity
Rose Fielder had grown used to being one of very few women in golf-club engineering, but recently decided to do something about it.
Having spent her entire career so far at Ping – working her way up to Director of Engineering Operations after joining as a graduate project engineer – Fielder is aiming to raise awareness of her profession among other females.
“I’m one of very few women on our engineering team here, and trying to get a little more diversity in our team is something I’m pretty passionate about,” Fielder told Golf.com.
While studying at the University of Michigan, Fielder was connected with Ping by a professor who was working on a research project with the manufacturing firm, and she completed two internships.
Now she leads a team of more than 25 people and overseas Ping’s intern programme, and she’s looking to the women’s college golf network as a source of recruitment, having played at college level herself without any ambition to turn professional.
“That was really impactful for me, being able to have a job in golf but not be playing it,” Fielder said. “I think that is probably similar for a lot of collegiate women golfers.
“You don’t have to be a golfer to work [at Ping], but there’s definitely a benefit with a lot of our roles to having an understanding of the game.
“It definitely gets you off on the right foot here, with having the respect of your co-workers, trusting your opinion on the look of a club or the testing that you do out on the range of our new products.”
Last summer, two of Ping’s seven interns were women, and recently the Arizona-based firm hired Kirsty Hodgkins, a University of Colorado graduate who was on the golf team, after she met Fielder at a careers fair.
“Rose is just amazing,” said Hodgkins said. “And everyone at Ping is trying to encourage women, especially women engineers, to come to Ping, so it’s a very good environment to be in.”
Fielder’s networking-focused recruitment methods are paying off, so she plans to continue.
“I’ll try to expand my network a little and meet some new people who could help further spread the word about our internships and full-time positions.
“I’ve just been taking time out of my day to think ‘who could I reach out to, who could I connect with to try to get the word out organically’. I think it’s been helping quite a bit.”