Celebrating International Women in Engineering Day at CSA Catapult

Date: 23.06.2020

In celebration of International Women in Engineering Day 2020, on Tuesday 23rd June, we spoke to a few of our own CSA Catapult female engineers to learn more about their career in Engineering and what their favourite invention is.

Read more from our Engineers below:

What interested you to get into engineering?

Sofia Bekou, Laboratory Manager: I began my career as a scientist studying Chemistry. In the early days of my career I realised that even though I loved the subject I would like to become an ‘engineering girl’ so I did a PhD in Chemical Engineering. Engineering fascinates me because it teaches you how to analyse and solve problems.

Azadeh Aliaskarian, PCB Designer: I think when broken down, Engineering is both the practical and creative application of Science and Mathematics as you use it to solve problems. My favourite subjects in school were Art and Mathematics and by forming a career in Engineering it allows me to be both creative and critical and I love it.

Claudia Ferreira, Materials Engineer: I grew up surrounded by technology, my Dad always had amateur radio as a hobby. Since the time I could walk I would bother him while he was repairing something. I was highly influenced by him into wanting to go into Engineering. He was also in the navy but had given up an Engineering degree to raise me, so it felt as if I was achieving what he hadn’t been able to. Also, throughout my education it just became clear that I would fit better in an engineering role than in any other.

Do you have a favourite invention? Tell us more.

Sofia: While studying for my PhD, I needed to use an oxygen plasma machine to carry out my research. The University I was studying at did not have this machine at that time. So, I thought I could make one, or at least give a go. I created a plan then collaborated with an Electrical and Electronics Engineer student and we put together our knowledge to create an oxygen plasma machine. What I’ve learnt is that Engineering offers problem solving thinking and skills which you can adapt to any situation in your life.

Azadeh: My favourite innovation is social media. It’s a fantastic tool that connects people from all around the world. I’ve found it especially useful and an enjoyable invention during lockdown and these strange times.

Claudia: I’d have to say the paper transistor. It was developed by the same person that ended up founding my degree in Portugal, and without that degree I wouldn’t be where I am today.

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