ClearanceJobs recently sat down with Leandria Ates, a principal manufacturing engineer at Northrop Grumman. We chatted about her military transition from the U.S. Army and her role in manufacturing at Northrop Grumman. 

Path to Northrop Grumman

Leandria works at Northrop Grumman as a manufacturing engineer after serving in the military. Easing into civilian life can be challenging, but having people around that understand military service can make a big difference. Leandria says her transition to Northrop Grumman was smooth because of the organization’s focus on supporting veterans.

While Leandria obtained numerous skills in the military that are transferable to a civilian career, her experience in quality management and problem-solving have proven very helpful. In her current role, Leandria tests and problem-solves through the production lifecycle. It’s also normal for Leandria to wear many hats as a part of her role to keep everything running efficiently and accurately.

From the Military to Civilian Life

Leandria explains that, in the military, she worked on the final assembly side of manufacturing with a focus on the macroscale of operations. The perspective in her service has given her awareness of how the work she does impacts the many missions supported by Northrop Grumman.

Similarity in workflow has also helped Leandria’s shift to civilian life. Veterans at Northrop Grumman come from multiple military branches and roles, but processes and lingo also transition with them. With this overlap, Leandria found herself a natural fit on the Northrop Grumman team.

Roles at Northrop Grumman and Work-Life Balance

For Leandria, a key component to understanding her role and future with Northrop Grumman began with understanding the opportunities for operators and engineers. While some employees stay in their positions long term, the company also encourages lateral and vertical movement. Leandria has found this versatility to be valuable. As she gained new experiences outside the military, she’s found it helpful to be in an organization like Northrop Grumman that fosters employee growth and development.

Leandria has also been able to balance her career development with her life outside of work. While moving out of military life was an adjustment, there are some things that Leandria has maintained from her time in the service. She still rises early and keeps up her workout routine, balancing her personal schedule with her professional one at Northrop Grumman.

Growing as a Northrop Grumman Employee

Leandria has been able to grow in her comfort level with the systems and overall workflow processes at the company. Her experience as a veteran has helped, enabling her to take on different roles and further develop her skills – and Northrop Grumman has been there at every step, supporting her journey from full-time military service to full-time veteran team member.

Empowering employees like Leandria to be the first line of defense for problem-solving helps provide a sense of ownership and team camaraderie at Northrop Grumman. The company’s employees are the key to providing pioneering solutions that streamlines workflow and builds employee confidence, for veterans and non-veterans alike.

As one of the largest global, aerospace, defense and security companies in the world, Northrop Grumman proudly employs veterans as they make the transition to civilian life.


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