TU/e women give their tips on International Day of Women and Girls in Science

“Seize every chance that comes your way and don’t let fear stop you doing anything”

February 10, 2022

On February 11 we celebrate the International Day of Women and Girls in Science.

Illustration: Shutterstock

What advice would you give your younger self? Why is it important that women work in engineering and science (STEM)? In honor of International Day of Women and Girls in Science on February 11th, we asked TU/e women from a range of 'generations'- students, doctoral candidates, assistant and associate professors, full professors and support staff - six questions. Here are their answers.

"Avoid wasting time and energy on prejudices or useless negativity"

Diletta Giuntini (33), Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering (Mechanics of Materials section), focusing on the development of advanced ceramic materials.

Why did you choose a study/job in Stem (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)?

“I liked the challenge. I was genuinely interested in many majors when it came to choosing what to do in college. So in the end I went for something which I found exciting and that would likely lead me to explore the world (which it did): Aerospace Engineering - while cultivating my interests for non-STEM topics on the side. I especially liked engineering for how one gets to combine knowledge from many ‘pure’ sciences into creative solutions at the service of society. And I love flying and everything dealing with the sky, hence Aerospace.”

Who was your source of inspiration or role model that made you choose STEM?

“There wasn't anyone in particular, although an excellent and inspirational math teacher in high school certainly played a role. And it never crossed my mind to think of STEM as women-unfriendly. It just felt natural, as any other field would have.”

Why is it important that women work in STEM?

“I believe diversity (beyond the inclusion of women) plays a key role in empowering people and in improving every aspect of work and society in general. Different stories and perspectives bring creative solutions and a healthy sense of inclusiveness.”

How do you envision your own future?

“I love many aspects of my job: it’s never boring, it entails creativity, there is space for both individual work and collaboration, it involves discovering new things and sharing these and much else besides with new generations of engineers, and it provides a global network, which I enjoy.

This is why I want to grow in my role as a professor. I want to develop ever more new materials for use in challenging environments, ones that offer new functionalities, while also becoming a reliable mentoring figure for students, and contributing to make TU/e - and academia in general - an ever better place to be.”

What advice would you like to give your younger self?

“To seize opportunities that are inspiring without being afraid. And to avoid wasting time and energy on prejudices or useless negativity. As we say in Italian, Entra da un orecchio e esce dall’altro. Which translates as, Some things should go in one ear and out the other.”

“Women help create a more inclusive view of the future”

Wies Ruyters (23), currently completing the last semester of the Master of Data Science in Engineering. Spent a year as marketing and pr manager of student team SOLID and last year organized TU/e’s plenary Introduction weeks.

Why did you choose a technical study?

“At high school my favorite classes were Fine A, History and Math B. And ideally I wanted my uni program to have a bit a everything. That was hard to find, but industrial engineering and management sciences seemed to have a nice balance between people, business and math. People around me thought it strange that I would go to TU/e, because Math B was not my strongest subject, but I tried to ignore their opinions. I was happy to have finally made a choice.”

What inspired you to study this subject?

“During my bachelor's I discovered how challenging I found math, and how it helped me to think logically and to make connections. In particular logic, a specific field of math, inspired me. At the same time, social media was starting to become more popular and that made the impact of disinformation, 'fake news' and propaganda increasingly evident.

When the time came to choose a master's program, I asked myself what I enjoyed studying and which area I wanted to make myself useful in after graduating. This boiled down to the question: what specialist knowledge and skills do I need to help combat disinformation, and to reveal its impact? My current program,  Data Science in Engineering, offered a curriculum that would develop my skills in using data and statistics, and teach me how to use data visualization to communicate complex subjects.”

Why is it important, do you think, that there are women in engineering?

“Every individual has a bias, a prejudice in favor of or against someone or something. This can be influenced by any number of different things, big or small. Some biases relate to our gender, and to the opportunities we do or don't get as a result of our gender. Another important factor, of course, is where we come from. The more diversity we embed in and safeguard at our university, the more we are able to listen to other people. The more receptive we are to acknowledging the biases held by others, the more we learn about our own bias. I think every individual stands to benefit from this.

In engineering a designed product or technology is inherently biased, because it has been designed by a person. The longer the engineering world remains dominated by men, and the more we allow our daily life to be determined by technology, the more evident it will become that the end product has been designed through the eyes of the (white) man.”

How do you envision your own future?

“I want to work towards making transparent, accessible and honest information available for everyone.”

What advice would you give your younger self?

“In my bachelor's and the first year of my master's I often had the feeling that actually engineering wasn't for me at all. I've only realized this academic year that the opposite of this is true: being a women in engineering is something powerful - we can help create a more inclusive view of the future. Whereas I used to feel disadvantaged by my gender I now feel it empowers me.”

“Never stop learning; it’s how you keep yourself sharp”

Katja Pahnke (53), born and raised in Germany, Managing Director Eindhoven Engine BV (shareholders: TU/e, TNO & Fontys).

Why did you choose a technical study/career?

“At a very young age I showed an interest in all things technical and was passionate about technical subjects. I was very good at them, that encourages you too, of course. In Germany engineers are hugely valued. The country has strong industry, a diverse innovation landscape and striving for excellence makes it easier to choose a technical career.”

Who inspired you to do this?

“I come from a family with social occupations. My father was a teacher and worked with children with behavioral and learning problems, my mom worked with young people in care. As children we were certainly aware of marginalized groups because of the work our parents did. We realized how comfortable our own lives were, and that we could simply choose an occupation that interested us, that inspired us, in which we could grow and develop. And we learned early on to take ownership of our own well-being.

Besides this, it was a very ‘political’ time; we wanted to improve the world. I chose my first job because the company was the market leader in microbiological water and soil remediation. This is also where I learned the ins and outs of the business world and at the age of twenty-one I was given my first managerial role. Here too I learned to have the courage to stand up and take responsibility.

For the rest, I was passionate about being independent and wanted to make sure I kept my freedom to choose future jobs/roles, and so at a later stage I went off and studied Chemical Engineering.”

Why is it important that there are women in technical fields?

“I think that all forms of diversity are important to ‘the best solution’, the critical view and challenging one another. It goes further than gender. And yet often women do have a different type of leadership and do keep ‘the chain’ connected. Ultimately, it's about getting the best out of people, enabling everyone to play to their strengths and ‘to dare to be different’ - that's something I have experienced as a German in the Netherlands. A good mix of competences, background, experience, wisdom foster, I believe, a successful collaboration and a joint result.”

How do you envision your own future?

“In the coming years I want to position Eindhoven Engine as an innovation accelerator and to intensify the collaboration between industry and the knowledge institutions. In this way, I want to contribute to the successful valorization of knowledge, and to maintaining and extending the region's competitive strength. One aspect of this is ecosystem development, another is ‘unlearning’ how we do things when a different way may be better or reach the goal more quickly.

In addition, as a role model, I want to inspire others to take and to create roles with impact. My recent InspiringFifty Deeptech BeNeLux award is a lovely recognition of this endeavor.

And I want to continue to learn, and so I have a taken on a couple of supervisory directorships and advisory board roles, to keep myself sharp.”

What kind of tip would you like to give your younger self?

“Above all, know the things that motivate you, and your core values. Invest in these and organize your life in accordance with them. Take personal ownership - then you will always stand at the helm of your own career. And know what you can do, what you are good at, and let that be seen. Surround yourself with people who complement your competences and excel at something. This way you can - together - make the difference!”

“Women are pretty damn good at what they’re doing”

Dorina Bór (turning 24 this February), is in the second year of the master’s program Human-Technology Interaction. This year, she’s a board member of E.S.D.V. Footloose, Eindhoven's student dance association.

Why did you choose a study/job in Stem (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)?

“Ever since high school I have been interested in mathematics and physics. However, I also loved literature and history, so I took a bumpy road when it came to figuring out what I wanted to do in life. When asked what I wanted to become, I said a ‘liberal arts engineer’. With time, the engineering part got a tad stronger so I chose to start my studies as an industrial design engineer at Budapest University of Technology and Economics.”

Who was your source of inspiration or role model that made you choose STEM?

“I was exposed to rational thinking at a very young age by my father, who is an aerophysicist. However, I would say that my biggest role models were my high school mathematics and physics teachers. These two incredible women had a huge impact on me by demonstrating two paths open to someone working in their fields. My mathematics teacher had a family and taught out of love and desire to convey knowledge to the next generation. She also showed the fun side and the beauty of math. Sadly, she died of cancer four years ago.

My former physics teacher is still very active and teaches and works in the field with so much power and enthusiasm that you just get pulled in by the atmosphere she creates. She encourages her students to get the best out of themselves by attending competitions, writing articles or doing research from a young age. She also puts a huge emphasis on doing experiments in class and allowing her students to interact with all the devices and demonstration tools available. I am still in contact with her even now.”

Why is it important that women work in STEM?

“I believe the question should not be about STEM specifically. My belief is that in 2022 women work and they work in all the professions out there, including STEM. And to be honest, we are pretty damn good at what we are doing. The next step is showing people - especially young women - how successful and fulfilling a career path in STEM can be. The choice is there, they just have to take it.”

How do you envision your own future?

“My first and foremost goal is to graduate next year and to be able to work on a master’s thesis topic that I can become fully immersed in. Later, I would like to work in big tech as a User Experience Researcher with a special focus on well-being, values, and helping people. Maybe later I will do a PhD or start my own company. Who knows?”

What kind of advice would you like to give your younger self?

“I have more than one piece of advice:
1.         Be grateful for the chances and opportunities that are given to you, value them, and take them!
2.         Hard work pays off but too much hard work can crush you and a ‘crushed you’ is no good to anyone.
3.         Take time to celebrate and reflect on how much you have reached already. Cherish the milestones you’ve achieved.
4.         And lastly, give yourself some grace. You've got this!”


Annelies Bobelyn (38), assistant professor at the ITEM group in the Department of Industrial Engineering & Innovation Sciences.


“Because in engineering you never stop learning, that is a huge privilege.”


“A teacher in primary school. After I had given a talk in class that involved carrying out a number of science experiments, she predicted that I would become a professor. Later too my thesis mentor, Mirjam Knockaert, was a source of inspiration. She introduced me to the wonderful world of venture capitalists and how they evaluate their investments in new technology. What really stayed with me was that the team is more important than the technology."


“The first reason is very simple: we simply need more STEM profiles. That's why we need to reach as many women as possible. Secondly, diversity is very important in science and engineering, and women can offer a different perspective on a piece of research.”

How do you envision your own future?

“I would like to actively contribute to the marketing of the technology developed at our university. The gap between scientific research and social impact is often large. With my research and teaching, I want to reduce that gap. I also want to generate and share knowledge that allows the technical inventions produced here at the university to make an impact.”


“Choose your own path; don't make your choices a function of someone else's expectations. At first this may seem like choosing the hard road, but in time it will make you happier than you otherwise would have been.”

“Accepting people as they are is the most important thing we can do”

Adriana Creatore (48), full professor of Interface design & engineering for next generation energy technologies, and principal scientist at EIRES, Department of Applied Physics.

Why did you choose a study/career in a technical field?

“In high school I did really well in all my subjects, from Latin to chemistry, with the exception of drawing. But chemistry, biology and astronomy really fascinated me. When I was choosing what to study at university in Bari (Italy), I couldn't decide between chemistry, biology and pharmaceutical sciences. Eventually I picked chemistry.
Back then (mid-1990s) there were no open days and no Google, so the only way to get information was to go along to a department and ask around. Did anyone have the time or interest to answer questions about the degree program. Students in senior years proved a rich source of information. It was not until I was doing my graduation project that the idea of a possible academic career began to niggle at me. The university world has given me a great deal: lots of interaction with lecturers, friendships, and the sense of taking things further through experimentation than my supervisor had done before me.”

Who inspired you to pursue this path?

“Many people, without a doubt. But I would like to mention two of them: my father, who was a primary school teacher and who devised all kinds of physics and chemistry experiments for his pupils. For my birthday he gave me Meccano rather than a Barbie doll. And my chemistry/biology and astronomy teacher in high school, a lovely, quiet-mannered woman, close to retirement, who could explain the material brilliantly and who was the first person I talked to about university courses and choices.”

Why is it important that there are women in technical fields?

“The importance of women and diversity in general on the workfloor is this: diversity brings strength, creativity, development and innovation to a research team, because everyone brings his/her own unique qualities, experience and knowledge.

Funnily enough, only last week I listened to a monologue in which it was proposed that the word ‘diversity’ be replaced with the word ‘unicity’. Because ‘diversity’ emphasizes the presence of differences between people while ‘unicity’ gets people thinking about the unique qualities they themselves and others have to offer. The choice of word aside, if we want to achieve diversity/unicity in the workplace we all need to accept people as they are, that's the really important thing in all of this. And everyone must be bold enough to be themselves and to bring their unicity to the fore.”

How do you envision your own future?

“In terms of science, with my research team further shaping and adding depth to the theme of ‘Interface design & engineering for next generation energy technologies’, where the focus lies on interfaces where the selective and efficient transport of charges (electrons and ions) is required. And integrating the discipline of plasma in the energy transition.

For the rest, I would like to spend time on science communication. Talking about what happens in science, how it can be useful to society. I'm already doing this during the lessons I teach in secondary education, but that's a drop in the ocean. You need to go big with this, with science ambassadors, for example. You can also go one step further and aim to build a bridge between science and society. Supported by universities, companies and research institutes.”

If you could, what advice would you give your younger self?

“Don't be scared. Do what you enjoy and enjoy what you do. And always be yourself.”


Hieke van Heesch (aged 20), third-year student of Psychology & Technology.


“I have always been interested in the natural sciences, but that's not to say it was decided that I would go to a university of technology. When I found out that engineering and technology is more than just old-fashioned engineering and that people can be the focus, I was sold on the study Psychology & Technology. I hope to be able to help people by applying technology.”


“When I first heard about this study, I simply knew it was exactly what I was looking for! So my sources of inspiration were the girls who gave the 'what you can expect' talk at the higher education fair I was attending.”


“I think that diversity within groups always provides for new insights and ultimately better solutions that fit well in the bigger picture. Everyone looks at problems in their own way and if technical problems are only ever solved by a group that represents half the world's population, errors can creep into design processes. The book Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World designed for Men makes interesting reading on this subject.”

How do you envision your own future?

“The future still holds a lot of possible options for me. Various student teams and master's programs interest me. After completing my bachelor's, I will study Human Technology Interaction and later I'll do Data Science and Entrepreneurship. Once I've finished my education, I hope I'll get a cool management position in a company that somehow combines people, data and sustainability. I've not got an entirely clear picture yet, but these are the three themes that most interest me. Later on I hope to use data to give people an enjoyable time in a sustainable way.”


“Don't be afraid to look at technical studies and certainly don't think you're not up to the challenge. Engineering and technology is more than just old-fashioned engineering. For every woman there is a field that appeals within engineering and technology, I'm absolutely sure of that!”

“Alongside knowledge, persistence and mental strength are also important”

Danqing Liu (37), assistant professor at Chemical Engineering and Chemistry and visiting professor at South China Normal University. In her research she seeks to bridge the gap between machines (robots) and humans, enabling robots and people to communicate, in particular through touch sensation.

Why did you choose a study/job in Stem (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)?

“At a young age, when I experienced the first computers, I was fascinated by the calculation functions they could be programmed to perform. It was even more fascinating to me that they could perform given functions in response to the human mind. This prompted me to study Microelectronics, in which I learned about semiconductor technology and its use in integrated circuits. I came all the way from China to TU Delft to enroll as a master’s student. I learned about the materials and fabrication aspects of semiconductors. But at this point I was still dealing with ‘cold’ and ‘impersonal’ devices and I missed the human aspects. I became attracted to the organic materials that could perform steered biology-like action.

So far, of the five senses of sight, hearing, smell, touch and taste, the senses mainly being used to exchange information between people and machines are sight and hearing. In my research team we explore the application of touch sensation to enhance machine control. We are doing this by developing ‘smart’ coatings, whose surfaces show minor local deformation in response to an external machine trigger - like goose bumps on your skin. These deformed surfaces impart tactile perception to human fingers and enable machines to ‘talk’ to humans. This technique has immense applications, for example in remote surgery. Surgeons could communicate with the surgery robot not only by sight, but also by the sense of touch, thus enabling them to work more precisely.”

Who was your source of inspiration or role model that made you choose STEM?

“Two female figures inspire me. One of them is Lin Huiyin, the first woman architect in modern China. She worked on the restoration of cultural heritage sites in China. The other is Tu Youyou, a pharmaceutical chemist and the first Chinese (also a woman) to win the Nobel Prize. In architecture human aspects need to be optimized for human comfort while in pharmacy the goal is the molecular repair of human defects. These aspects bring together human behavior and control and that's what I'm still pursuing in my research.”

Why is it important that women work in STEM?

“The ratio between men and woman working in STEM is unbalanced. It does not require much imagination to realize that in some STEM fields more input from women might lead to somewhat different optimizations. Take my own area, for example. I work on the 'man-machine interface'. The fact that it is called the 'man-machine interface' emphasizes the masculine aspects of this research. With the involvement of more women researchers, I hope that we can introduce aspects of touch sensations that we may think of as being more feminine, and can explore the emotions they cause.”

How do you envision your own future?

“I hope to establish an academic career. Not only to stimulate young people, both men and women, to pursue their own career in science, but also because I hope to become a role model specifically for women students; women can perform as well as men in the natural sciences.

With respect to my personal objectives I am developing communicating/interactive materials, as they are called, and I hope to generate materials that can communicate between themselves, either by exchanging touch and contact information or in a ‘contactless’ manner, by exchanging chemical information, e.g. comparable to an insect's pheromones.”

What advice would you like to give your younger self?

“Alongside knowledge, persistence and mental strength are also important.”


“There's no reason why a woman shouldn't go into technology and engineering”

Patricia Dankers (43), full professor of biomedical materials & chemistry at the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Institute for Complex Molecular Systems (ICMS).

Why did you choose a study/career in a technical field?

“Even as a young child I was interested the natural world around me, and how things worked. But I am also hugely interested in culture and music. At the time I went off to university (in 1996) the idea was already around that you'd get a better job in science and engineering than in the cultural/music sector. That certainly played a part in my choice.”

Who inspired you to pursue this path?

“My father was (and still is) my source of inspiration. He is a mechanical engineer and somewhere along the line I think he impressed on me that a career in science and technology is a good choice. With his technical background and knowledge, he can make and repair anything. There's nothing you can imagine that he can't make. He has a technical solution for just about anything.”

Why is it important that there are women working in technical fields?

“I think that both women and men can be gifted in technical subjects; perhaps they approach issues in different ways and consequently come up with different solutions and insights. But I can only surmise (it's not something I've researched). There's no reason why a woman shouldn't go into technology and engineering.”

How do you envision your own future?

“As a research group we are working together on various important topics. One of these is the development of a synthetic material, a synthetic matrix, for the growth of various human and animal cells. At this stage, most of our experiments on this are still pretty fundamental. Yet I feel we are currently making huge strides in this work. We have amassed so much fundamental knowledge of our materials that now we really can steer the cells at the molecular level. In terms of the material components we can bring together, the possibilities are just so vast that inevitably we are going to have to use a screening/robotic approach. This is the only way we can optimize the material to suit each type of cell, tissue, mini-organ, and so on. My dream is now to develop this for plant cells too; which is not yet a self-evident step. It would also be fantastic, I think, if one (or more!) of our materials were to reach patients.”

If you could, what advice would you give your younger self?

“Enjoy everything you do (I always have); and be grateful for that joy. After all, isn't it wonderful if you can be part of a research team working on shared research questions and research goals; such as the development of a synthetic matrix for cell growth, or a dispensing system for medicines, or a coating for a blood vessel or heart? I'd also say, don't forget to enjoy the other things in life, like your immediate and wider family, friends, making music, sports, delicious food, a sociable drink, or simply feeling good while working in the garden on a lovely summer's day.”

“Don't be put off by engineering's reputation as a man's world”

Isa Lamers (21), third-year student of the Bachelor of Applied Mathematics. Active member of student association SSRE. With eight other students, she organizes the TU/e Lustrum Gala for 3,500 students.

Why did you choose a technical study?

“Exact sciences were the ones I enjoyed most in high school. When I took an extra natural sciences program at Utrecht University, I discovered that I'm motivated by challenges and being able to find things out for myself. I started the joint Bachelor of Data Science run by TU/e and Tilburg University. During my first year I discovered that I enjoyed the technical aspects of Data Science so much that I wanted to explore things in more depth than the bachelor's offered. So then I decided to switch to a subject that suited me better: Applied Mathematics.”

What inspired you to study this subject?

“The mindset of seeing possibilities and challenging myself is something that was instilled in me as a child, especially by my parents and my granddad.”

Why is it important that there are women in technical fields?

“Having more women positively impacts the dynamic on the workfloor, the social aspect, for instance, or the strategies and work forms used in a company. A mix of men and women creates more perspectives and a greater diversity of experience, which to my mind fosters better cooperation and more innovative ideas.

Very many people think that mathematicians walk an individualistic career path, but that couldn't be further from the truth: like many other technical sectors, math is all about cooperation. There is so much to know, to calculate, to model and to prove that one person can never do it all alone. And then you need someone to consider how the knowledge can be applied. This collaboration works best, I think, when both women and men are at the table.”

How do you envision your own future?

“I don't yet have one particular dream I'm working towards. What I find so appealing about math is its diversity of subjects. I tend to get bored a bit sooner than other people and I'm sometimes ready to move on to a new subject quite quickly, so in the future I think it would be fun to have a job that involves variety and challenge. Working as a mathematician for Defense is something I think would be really cool, or working on a project basis as a freelancer, because these wouldn't be regular monotonous jobs.”

What advice would you give your younger self?

“Don't be put off! Not by the challenges nor by the reputation of being a 'man's world' that still lingers in some parts of the technical sector. Everyone in the math world has a good brain and respects other people who also have a good brain, regardless of whether they identify as a woman or a man.

And as for the challenges: challenges are part and parcel of math and many other technical degrees. Most students have to work hard to understand the things they are working on - at least I do. Don't let this put you off, instead turn it around: How cool is it that you understand and can effectively apply things that everyone else thinks are hocus pocus?”


Patricia Jaspers (39), managing director of TU/e institute EAISI.


“Working towards more healthy, safe and sustainable society is an undertaking that both interests me and that I value. I have always had a special interest in the medical domain, in ethical issues and in the development of engineering and science, and how these are influenced by society - and vice versa. Developments in the field of artificial intelligence really fascinate me; the possibilities seem endless. Approached properly, AI can raise the quality of life in so many ways. But it also entails important ethical issues. These too, I find captivating.”


“My father spent much of his working life at DSM, in the Central Lab and later in the department providing training in measurement and control technology. As a child I'd often wander into his little ‘office’ at home, across from my bedroom. He would spend hours in there, studying, soldering and 'tinkering' using all kinds of colorful little cylinders, transistors, wires, you name it. His desk was always strewn with interesting structures, dense forests of little bits, on flat green boards. I was curious, wanted to know how everything worked. I think that's what sparked my interest in engineering.”


“I am convinced that having diversity in all sorts of ways - background, vision, experience, and so on - is essential to innovation and creativity. Diversity is equally necessary to developments in science and engineering. Here, gender diversity and inclusivity are vital. What's more, if you look at how tight the job market is today and occupations likely to boom in future, we already need more engineers than can we produce and women are needed in technical fields more than ever before.”

How do you envision your own future?

“Recently, I joined the supervisory board of Onderwijsgroep Buitengewoon, a federation in Venlo of a number of schools in special education. Very interesting and I'm learning a great deal! At some point in the future I'd also like to take on a supervisory role at a tech company. Thinking longer term, my ambition is to hold a board position, preferably one with a strong link to engineering and/or science.”


“Find people who share your interests, who support you and can help you move ahead. And yes, women need to help each other. People who ask questions are not passed over, but can be helped, can learn; so speak up. Try to see failures and setbacks as valuable learning opportunities - though I know that isn't easy. And follow your curiosity and don't let anyone stand in your way.”

“With curiosity and will power you can reach any goal”

Alexandra de Boer (23) started the Master of Electrical Engineering this academic year. She has sat on the board of master's association Eir and is a member of the TU/e information team.

Why did you chose a technical study?

“The STEM field (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, ed.) has always been interesting to me. This, combined with the great career prospects, made it a relatively easy decision to pursue education in this direction.”

What inspired you to study this subject?

“I don't think any particular person inspired me to study Electrical Engineering - after all, your choice of study should be entirely your own. But it did help that my family has always encouraged me and exposed me to all the things you can do with engineering. That led to my feeling inspired to study this subject.”

Why is it important that there are women in technical fields?

“Having diversity signals to society that everyone, whatever their gender, can participate in this field. Ultimately, you achieve much more with inclusivity.”

How do you envision your own future?

“I'd love to help make the STEM field and the innovations they generate more accessible to everyone, regardless of who they are and where they come from.”

If you could, what advice would you give your younger self?

“You don't have to take to your field like a duck to water at a young age to be good at it, for it to become your passion. After all, two essential attributes to reaching your goal are curiosity and willpower.”

Activities at TU/e for the International Day for Women and Girls in Science

On the afternoon of Friday February 11th the - online - fifth edition of the EAISI cafe is devoted to women in science. Seven women researchers at TU/e will talk about their research on artificial intelligence.

The Women in Science network WISE is celebrating the International Day for Women and Girls in Science on Tuesday February 15th with an online evening program: Boost your STEM Esteem. Author of the book F*ck die Onzekerheid, Vréneli Stadelmaier, is kicking off the evening with a lecture on imposter syndrome, how to overcome fear and learn to have faith your abilities. This will be followed by various small-group workshops.


We strive to achieve a diverse, international and inclusive academic community of students and employees. Equality, cooperation and inclusivity are values we hold in high regard. We pay special attention to improving the gender balance in science. One way we do this is by pursuing our Irène Curie Fellowship program for women scientists. Because we believe that our education and research benefit from diversity and a range of perspectives.

Gender balance is part of our Strategy 2030 within the theme of Talent.

Brigit Span
(Corporate Storyteller)

Keep following us