From childhood science experiments to a STEM career
Engineering is one of the most challenging, fast-paced and demanding roles that gets your adrenaline pumping, and to work in such a sector is a privilege. It is the perfect combination between the challenges that you face and the sweet victory after solving and completing a task that makes engineering so enjoyable. No two days – or problems – are the same.
Like many others, my natural progression to a STEM-based career evolved from my curiosity in the sciences as a child. I was fortunate enough to attend a science-stream boarding school, and as a result, was exposed to the STEM academic pathway since I was thirteen. It was the practical chemistry experiments in the science lab that made me realize that I truly enjoyed learning science. It was a simple choice for me – I liked experimentation in the sciences and realized that these fun experiments naturally all had an application in the real world.
At AVEVA, I work as a digital solution graduate engineer and have the privilege to work with people from across the globe. Engineering is a truly universal subject, so I enjoy working for a company with many bases around the world. Working with people from various backgrounds, cultures, languages and across different time zones broadens my perspectives on life and my work. Although my team is made up of vastly different people – ranging from different backgrounds, skillsets, cultures and personalities – we complement one another perfectly. It’s without a doubt what I enjoy most about working in Engineering, and for a global organization such as AVEVA.
So many individuals and organizations – including AVEVA – are doing a fantastic job at attracting more women into the engineering field. However, at present, it is clear that men dominate this sector. Statistics show that only 20 percent of women make up engineering graduates, but it is reassuring that over the years we are seeing a greater proportion of women pursuing a career in the field by selecting a STEM-related degree. To any woman who is considering a STEM based career, my advice would be to just go for it. We all have the capability to strive in this field, regardless of gender, and if your heart lies in Engineering then nothing should prevent you from pursuing that.
There are now many initiatives for women in the STEM and Engineering industry, which is promising for future equality in the field. For example, a significant initiative is the Kyrgyzstan space program, which works to bring together women and girls to build and launch the country’s first ever satellite. I’m an avid supporter of STEM initiatives both inside and outside of AVEVA, and like many of these independent initiatives, the Kyrgyzstan program is led by a non-profit organization.
I feel very fortunate to have ongoing support and training at AVEVA. This, combined with my determination to discover and problem solve within the engineering field, has led me to produce work that I’m incredibly proud of. I recently won a DEMOJAM competition that AVEVA held for the Technical Sales Team, which required us to build a demo on the upcoming and latest AVEVA technologies. Alongside the APAC graduate team, I helped to build a demo on AVEVA’s Virtual Unified Operations Center using extended reality and artificial intelligence technology. It was a fantastic personal achievement.
Even this early on in my career I can see the positive future that lies ahead, and I would actively encourage any woman interested in the STEM field to pursue their interests. Times have changed and access is widening as many organizations like AVEVA now have fantastic initiatives to springboard women into a STEM career of their choice. As a final note, I’d ask that you follow your passion, and most importantly, do what you enjoy!
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Maamira Mior Ishamuddin
Maamira Mior Ishamuddin is a Digital Solutions Graduate Engineer at AVEVA.