Employee Spotlight: Caitlin Bailey

Every one of us is more than just our work and the services we provide. We have families, hobbies, and other passions that fulfill our lives and make us better at what we do each day.  After working in this industry for a few years, I’ve gotten to know many of the people that make up the EMC community at large and at Elite. Here is a brief look at what makes our Elite family so unique and diverse…

With the new season kicking into gear, we have new challenges and opportunities to grow.  One way we're maximizing on these opportunities is by recruiting a new engineer to our environmental stress department.  Caitlin Bailey is a bright and talented young mechanical engineer who knows what it means to be a part of a team in more ways than one.  Read below to see what I mean and learn more about the newest addition to the Elite family:

How did you get into Environmental Stress testing?

I grew up with [Elite Environmental Manager] John Lindberg's daughter. From the time I was about 5 years old, John had been telling me that I would be an engineer someday (I didn’t believe him until I was declaring my major in college). His work always sounded interesting to me, so when the time was right and he had a position available, I jumped on it!

What’s your proudest moment in life so far? 

I would have to say that so far my proudest moment is from high school. I was an assistant coach for the local junior high volleyball teams for my sophomore and junior years. Come senior year, I had hopes of being a head coach. The School Board had recently set a rule that any head coach needed to be 18 or older at the beginning of the season; I would only be 17 for the first portion of the season. I went to a School Board meeting and fought for a chance to be a head coach. I remember before I went in to give my “speech”, the athletic director said to me “Their concern with a young person like you as a head coach is that the kids won’t respect you as an adult. If you can go in there and command their respect they will see that you can do that with the kids as well.” I took that to heart and it worked! I was the head coach of the 8th grade girls’ volleyball team that year.

So I guess, so far in life my proudest moment was a time that I fought for an opportunity and got it. However, I like to think that the best is yet to come.

Any tips for a first-time coach?

  • Don’t sweat the small stuff (cliche but true)
  • You don’t have to be an expert on the sport right off the bat, it is half the fun learning new strategies and drills along with the kids.
  • Have fun with it. Too many people lose sight of the purpose of it and forget that you are dealing with kids and they are there to have a good time while learning the sport. Also, teams that are enjoying what they are doing usually perform better anyway! Win-win!

What would you consider to be your passion outside of work? How did you get started in it? Any advice for anyone looking to try this activity?

My passion outside of work is definitely volleyball. After college, I returned to coaching at the same junior high that I coached at in high school. I love coaching. It gives me the chance to jump in with the team and play (during the fun drills) and also to help junior high aged girls understand what it means to be part of a team and gain some confidence all while learning a really fun sport.

I started coaching my sophomore year of high school when I decided to stop playing volleyball. During my freshman season of volleyball, I broke a bone in my back. After 9 months of physical therapy, I returned to play again sophomore year. Let’s just say the level of pain was higher than I would have liked and I decided to be done after that season. I just couldn’t quite let the sport go, so I went back to my alma mater junior high and started helping out with the teams there…the rest is history.

My advice for anyone getting into coaching any sport at the junior high level is that you can’t sweat the small stuff. That is a particularly difficult age group and it is difficult for them too. If you can create a strong team environment, they will learn and have fun and you will be surprised how much fun you have along the way as well.

If you had a personal motto, what would it be?

My dad always says “Anything worth doing is worth doing right.” I’ve always liked that. Although, if you ask my mom, she would say that in dad’s case it should read “Anything worth doing is worth over-doing.”

If you could be paid in something other than money, what would you choose?

Easy, chocolate.

Quick Team Member Facts

Year Started at Elite: 2015

Areas of Interest:  Medical technology – the design that goes into things like artificial limbs and other prosthetics has always intrigued me. I like the idea of looking at living things and how they move as if they are machines – we are made up of a bunch of cams and linkages. It just makes you appreciate the smaller details in nature.

Education:  BS - Mechanical Engineering, Michigan State University - College of Engineering (Honors College)

Any unique hobbies, talents, skills, experiences, etc.: Snowboarding – I love trips to the mountains, playing and coaching volleyball, stamp collecting as nerdy as that may seem…