October 14, 2020
Patty Lands Dream Job after Relaunching her Career at Trane Technologies
Our award-winning ReLaunch program helps engineers return to work
Patty Christgau struggled to find an engineering role after taking a year off work to attend to personal matters.
“Recruiters made it clear that the gap in my resume could be a problem, even though I hadn’t been out of the workforce long,” she said.
Patty is an electrical engineer and originally hails from Ribeirao Preto, Brazil. She holds a Master’s degree from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and has experience in technical roles designing controls for nuclear power plants’ safety systems and in engineering project management—her true passion.
Through word of mouth
Patty says she lucked out when she heard about Trane Technologies’ Engineering ReLaunch Program through a friend. It's a 12-week, paid professional returnship opportunity for engineers who have stepped away from their careers and are ready to put their passion back to work. It started when our engineering leadership team realized the lack of opportunities for professionals looking to rejoin the workforce in the critical mid-career stage.
“Onboarding through the ReLaunch program was unique because of all the support I received,” Patty said. “At most companies you get one day of onboarding meetings, but through this structured program my cohorts and I received continued support and mentorship from company leaders through the entire 12 weeks.
“We had mentors, sponsors and Human Resources team members checking in on us and making sure we were getting the support we needed. The program is amazing and made a big difference for my career.”
Taking the next step
At the end of the 12 weeks, program members are eligible to apply to open positions at Trane Technologies. Patty remembers when her sponsor, Katie Davis, vice president of engineering and technology for our Residential HVAC and Supply business, helped her look for open positions that she really liked and wanted. And then Patty interviewed for and landed her current role of senior project manager in the Project Management Office of our Commercial HVAC business.
“I am very, very happy with where I am now,” Patty said. “I have a great team that I’m proud to work with and leaders that I look up to. I love my role, which involves keeping all the moving parts of my project on track, on time and within budget. I like connecting everyone and facilitating anything my team might need to make their work go more smoothly. I really enjoy helping others—it’s one of the reasons why love project management.”
What is your best advice for women relaunching their careers? “Don’t feel insecure and don’t hesitate. Sometimes when you’ve been away from work for a time you can lose your confidence. But know that you can do it – you can go back to work and get the support you need through the ReLaunch program at Trane Technologies. Grab every opportunity you have.”