Acevedo was one of the first Hispanic students to earn a Master's degree in engineering from Stanford University, but to afford it, she simultaneously worked at IBM as an engineer.
Next, Acevedo worked at Apple where she used her experience selling Girl Scouts cookies to boost the company's sales. As an executive there, she gathered data to prove why she should work in Asia Pacific.
Instead, her colleagues wanted the information she had pulled but not give her chance at the job abroad. "I just grabbed the presentation and I said, 'If you want this data and this information, it comes with me' and so they ended up having to hire me," Acevedo says.
"Girl Scouts gave me that early confidence of being competent to talk about money, talk about what I deserve and not taking no for an answer," she adds.
Today, Acevedo is using her work experience to address the lack of exposure girls have to science, technology, engineering and math. In fact, the organization launched 23 new STEM and outdoor-focused badges last month to encourage more girls to build their skills in these fields, according to a release.
With examples like the carpenter's badge, the electrician's and outdoor badges, Acevedo says the Girl Scouts have always had a STEM focus but hadn't called it that in the past. She notes it's time to make girls more confident in developing these skills, which has prompted the organization to unveil the many new badges.
The organization also works with the Society of Women Engineers, Code.org, Netflix and many others to create programming for the girls.
She adds earning these badges will give Girl Scouts a "sense of accomplishment" that will help close the gender gap in STEM. "There's no way that we're going to close that gap in the United States," she says, "without tapping into the great resources of girls and young women."
"That's something that we really are focusing on, the U.S. needs to have a STEM-ready workforce," Acevedo says. "We are not just doing it for the girls, we're doing it for America."
Thinx just got a new CEO. Here's what she wants to accomplish in her role
Why being company founders helped Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Reed Hastings succeed as CEOs
Like this story?
Like CNBC Make It on Facebook.