Aerospace Engineer, Former NASA Rocket Scientist, & Corporate Trainer
Aerospace Engineer, Former NASA Rocket Scientist, & Corporate Trainer
Shayla Rivera is an Aerospace Engineer and former Rocket Scientist with NASA turned salesperson, corporate trainer, and now Int’l Keynote Speaker, TEDx Speaker, TV & Radio host, Emcee/Host, Comedian, Actor, Writer, Producer, Seminar Facilitator, Panel Moderator and as of 2017, Director of the ENGR[x] program and Professor of Practice with the College of Engineering at Texas A&M University.
It’s Not Rocket Science | HBO Latino
TEDx: IMAGINATION: “ I’m-A-Genie-in-Creation”
Diversity & Inclusion: Celebrate Diversity
Mom Wants her Money Back – Stand Up Comedy Performance
ABC: Awareness Begins Change
The most important subject to study for anyone seeking true success is the one subject usually given the least amount of study, that subject is the self. I realized that I was going on through my existence feeling many times like I was dragging a great bag filled with some discomfort that I wasn't quite sure what it was. This affected my daily life in negative ways, the most common of which was keeping me from my best. I have made it my business to get to understand me and through that I have gotten to understand most others. Through paying attention, I can report that I found a way to get 'clear' about why I do what I do, and this has opened the door to me changing the things I need to and want to change. Humor has been my saving grace and combining humor with respectful contemplation I can share ways to become clear and then free from what holds us back. This will be a great time to laugh our way to Awareness.
Equity, Diversity & Inclusion: Celebrate Diversity
Diversity is a ‘hot button’ topic in America right now. This subject is often approached from the perspective of fear about our differences instead of from the opportunities brought forth by the same. Fearing what we don’t understand only promotes limitations in our growth. Once we learn to celebrate what makes us different from one another than we will welcome and celebrate one another. What we must remember is that the very strength of our nation is reflected on the writing of our National Seal, “E Pluribus Unum” – Out of Many, One.
Laughing in the Face of Adversity
The elements needed to transcend all the stresses and adversities in your life can be found in a shift of perspective. Moreover, the longer you’ve lived the clearer your perspective gets, and the funnier adversity becomes. Our biggest problem is that from infancy, we have been taught that taking ourselves seriously is paramount to obtaining respect and success, especially in our culture where not taking yourself seriously enough is seen as a sign of weakness and even a feeble mind. This is how so many of us live in a state of abject seriousness.
The truth is that when you can laugh at yourself, you can laugh with others. This talk will give you tools to show you how to see the funny and maybe even write your ‘act’... Sharing your act will be completely on a volunteer basis. There isn’t a life without some Comedy in it…that is… without some comedy in it, there isn’t a life.”
Resilience, Endurance & Just Showing Up
A great quote we have all heard is, “Don’t look so much at how far you have yet to go, instead look at how far you have already come.”
Our culture has made resilience into something that we must develop and strengthen. Yet resilience is something we possess and can only display. We demonstrate resilience every day by the mere act of showing up, what we do not do however, is acknowledge and give ourselves credit for what we have already gone through. Yet we are not here just to endure but to recognize the immense ability of the human spirit to remain even after much has happened.
When we endure, we are simply tolerate something while often grinding our teeth. When we see the true strength of our spirit, we recognize our resilience. Endurance is of the world, resilience is of the spirit. Showing up is the first step, being present is the modality that can bring peace. The only way to strengthen our resilience is to recognize it.
Transforming Stress - First You Have to Know You're Stressed
If there is one thing I have observed in my life, it is the amazing capability we all possess to pretend we are not stressed. Heck, we don't even know what stress looks like. We think admitting to stress is somehow a sign of weakness and thus we must absolutely deny that stress might have a hold of us. Stress is a reality, NOT, a possibility, so why fight it... I say Join Stress and laugh all the way to a better longer and healthier life. I will give you techniques that will help you to "Not Choose to Be Stressed".
Warning!: Once you choose to become an unstressed individual you will probably stress everybody out!
- Recognizing stress and moving through it quicker (It is easier and funnier than you think)
- Understanding the real 'value' of Stress (Hint; People in the Cemetery have no stress)
- There is value in stress, but no value in Being stressed. (If it hurts when you go like this... don't go like this)
Empowerment STEM / STEAM
“I was a typical young girl, conflicted with insecurities and shyness. Yet in possession of a challenge driven determination that has not quit to this day,” she says. Shayla understands the importance of the voices that either encourage or discourage and has always chosen to be a source of belief and inspiration. “Truth is, if I could do anything, anyone else also can.”
Helping young women believe in themselves and their potential in STEM & STEAM fields is a driving force in Shayla’s purpose. She travels around the globe encouraging girls to see the truth of their potential. And speaks to women to help them remember the incredible strength of their nature. “I have never met a woman who was not fierce in some way, even though they could not see it. All I want to do is remind them of just how amazing we truly are.”
Nothing is as powerful nor important as the individual. Becoming clear about the obstacles in our way is paramount to Personal Improvement. When we explore our conditioning we begin to see how our seeming limitations are simply what we were conditioned to believe and now agree with. The work at hand is to begin to be honest in identifying the obstacles in our way, and seeing how they are kept in place by our own selves. Once we are able to stop denying this self-blocking, then we can begin to remove, go around, or jump over them to clear our paths and open up to new and exciting opportunities. This is the only way to a more ¬¬¬¬¬fulfilling life.
Like everything else, leadership begins with the individual. A leader is not defined by a title or a position of leadership but by their ability to inspire others to work towards a common goal. Traits of leadership such as having a vision, setting goals, charisma, communication skills, character, intelligence, and many more, can be found within every person. I focus on helping individuals recognize and strengthen these traits within themselves. Then give them the tools that will help them do the same for others.
Value of Humor
The Value of Humor in our lives cannot be overstated. A person who cannot find fault within and then laugh at themselves is a very poor soul indeed. It is amazing to me how we have made it somehow a fault when a person tends to be gregarious and laugh a lot. We deem those people as not capable to be ‘successful’ somehow. I say take what you do seriously, but don’t take yourself so seriously. Finding where we all trip in life, then being able to laugh about it is the very genesis of all good things. I can Laugh at myself…and yes, I can also laugh at you.
"We are super thankful for Shayla’s time last week, and got lots of incredible feedback. Everyone really enjoyed it! Her story is inspiring and very relatable to everyone in different ways. It was perfect timing with what’s going on in the world, and we are very grateful for her joining us. Her strength shines through all her challenges and motivates us to keep going. She’s right, we all have survived hard things in life and we will continue to do so even when we don’t understand why. Thanks again."
"Simply put, the delegates enjoyed your presentation… our best ever speaker ratings…you were awesome! Thanks for supporting our conference. We look forward to hosting you again in the future."
"I'd like to thank you for coming to USI and speaking to our students. I have heard nothing but great things about yesterday’s event. The students loved it! One of the students at the event even said that you were the best keynote speaker she has heard at USI. You truly motivated and inspired our students to succeed and reach for the stars."
"On behalf of the Siouxland Chapter of SHRM, I would like to express our sincerest appreciation for the riveting presentation delivered to our members. We were inspired and motivated by Shayla’s entertaining anecdotes to move forward and lead with sensitivity. We couldn’t get enough! Thank you!"
"I highly recommend Shayla. She brought the house down with her incredible presentation. She had everyone laughing, crying and thoroughly entertained! One of Shayla’s greatest qualities is that she has a strong charisma and connection with her audience. We received amazing feedback from our attendees regarding Shayla’s presentation."