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Project Engineer ANZ

Did you always want to be an engineer?

No. I originally wanted to pursue a career in medicine, but my strong performance in maths, chemistry and physics at school naturally directed me towards studying mechanical engineering at college.

Whilst I was there, I noticed a significant gender imbalance. At the time, a lot of my fellow students were aiming for IT jobs, but they seemed to me to involve a lot of people doing the same thing and I wanted to stand out. Having the opportunity to be distinctive in the field of engineering was very compelling.

I was fortunate to be the first female sales engineer hired by Sandvik. I proved myself as a top salesperson and was even promoted to Productivity Team Leader, leading productivity improvement projects. When I moved to Australia, I applied for a role at John Crane and my engineering experience secured me the job. I haven’t looked back since and I thank God, as it was definitely the right direction for me!

Would you consider encouraging women to pursue an engineering career?

As a supporter of women in the industry, I highly encourage it. Engineering offers a rewarding career for anyone with creativity, attention to detail, patience and perseverance - all areas in which women naturally excel.

My top bit of advice is to continuously learn and upskill. If you do that, professional success will follow.

In what ways are women engineers ‘Pioneers of Progress’?

There are still fewer of us than men in engineering, but each of us ‘out front’ is constantly breaking down boundaries and I am delighted to say that many women joined Sandvik as sales engineers after me.

To me, ‘Progress’ means that the journey or trend is ongoing. And I’m proud of the fact that Smiths is continuing to advance the proportion, as well as the professional prospects, of its women engineers.

We are involved in outreach programmes that encourage girls to study STEM subjects and gain engineering qualifications. We’re also proactively seeking to hire more women as engineers, improve their technical skills with things like the Lean green-to-black belt training and our own Smiths Excellence System (SES) initiative, as well as their management prospects with our ‘Accelerate’ leadership training programme or by supporting Masters degrees.

This commitment will see more women take the lead and become pioneers in their respective fields.

Career path

  • Degree in mechanical engineering: 2001
  • First female sales engineer for Sandvik: 2001
  • Skill-assessed by Engineers Australia, secured permanent residency: 2013
  • Joined Engineering Plastics as technical sales engineer: 2014
  • Joined John Crane in Australia: 2015. Since then, roles have included:
    • Internal sales & support officer
    • Customer support & trade compliance officer
    • EHS & quality coordinator
    • Project engineer (current)
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Engineering offers a rewarding career for anyone with creativity, attention to detail, patience and perseverance
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