I believe in promoting women in Engineering.
I came from a very humble background where my family lived in a room at the back of a factory for years, never owned a story book or a soft toy, had to work as a factory operator in my secondary 3 and 4 holidays, gave tuition classes and worked in a fast-food restaurant washing toilets during my JC and UG days. I have a strong desire to help youth from the low income and humble background like myself. I have always hoped to inspire those from similar background to strive for excellence.
As an active advocate of widening doors for women in STEM and in particular Engineering, I encourage young girls to become excited by the prospect of an education and future in those fields. I proactively mentor in schools, giving career talks annually to my former secondary school, driving students to discover the wonders of science, and engineer their own constructs for lifelong success.
More women are needed in Engineering and STEM fields as the current women participation in engineering and technology is low compared to life-science and health-related sciences.
Women bring diversity to engineering and technology, a diversity of experiences, of ideas, of solutions, of approaches, etc.
If we do not engage women in the science and engineering enterprises, we are ignoring at least 50% of World’s intellectual talent since half the population is women. Engaging more women in science and engineering careers will be a long-term sustainable solution as the greying world population.
The belief that women are less adept for logic, mathematics, physical tasks, etc., is unfounded as there are no scientific proofs. Female students do equally well in these subjects as compared to the male students.
The perception that women are not suitable for engineering and engineering jobs is totally unfounded. The so-called negative stereotypes about women engineers are more of misconception. Female and male engineers share the same role in modern society. Women in engineering are no different from men in engineering. There is nothing a man can do and woman cannot do. Female engineers have the same place as male engineers as the era for the demand of physical prowess to carry out engineering functions have long gone. There is no reason why society will not accept women as engineers, and there are no challenges that are peculiar to women engineers.
As for stereotyping, there is a longstanding stereotyping for both men and women, that men are the breadwinners and women are child-bearers, care-givers and housekeepers. To encourage more women into science and engineering will require normalizing and equalizing the roles of both men and women.