International Women’s Day 2019
The areas of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) has historically been heavily weighing towards male gender. Stereotyping these functions as male-centric and gender discrimination in this field has been primarily the reason why women shy away from choosing STEM as a career option. Siemens through its competencies has been promoting science and technical education in India through programs such as Dual VET program, Siemens Scholarship Program, and Government-run ITI Upgradation initiatives. More importantly Siemens is ensuring a gender-balanced approach in these programs by aggressively supporting women candidates to bridge the gap. These are some inspiring stories:
“In my family, there was no-one from the technical field. That’s why I decided to take it up” 18 year old Anjali declares as she enthusiastically makes her way to the Building Management Systems department of Siemens’ India.
“Engineering is something I always wanted to do” she explains. “After my 10th exams, I applied for the Siemens Technical Academy (STA) and passed with flying colours. They interviewed me, I got selected, and I’ve been working and training in Building Technologies since” Anjali adds.
“My family played a crucial role in my career – they simply let me pursue my dreams” she says with a gleam in her eye. “They appreciate how hectic my days can be – between work in the morning and MS CIT classes in the evening. But I love what I do, and some day, I’d love to lead the team I am in” she says with clarity.
“Don’t be intimidated with STEM fields, it can be wonderful experience. It not only gives you a theoretical understanding of how things work, but also you get to implement technologies across all walks of life. That makes everything worth it”.
“Back in college, there were hardly any girls in my class – something which made it difficult for me to mingle with people,” Pavithra shares as she handles the brake calculation software at an automotive MNC.
“Six of us were selected from our college where our technical and mechatronic training commenced at Siemens Scholarship Program. I was moulded into something I never imagined I could be. Every aspect of my life consequently improved – and I saw my confidence growing every day” she explains.
“Before, my parents were sceptical about me entering STEM field. Moreover, inhibitions about girls talking to boys was a big deal in a conservative background that my parents come from. But I chose not to listen to naysayers and went with my gut. Over time, my parents realised that women can do it all and they’ve never been more proud of me”.
On what she’d like to convey to young girls out there, Pavithra shares, “There is no such thing as a male-dominated industry. If not more, women are equally capable. Be confident, don’t be shy of your talents, and just go out there and show what you’re worth. Nobody will dare stop you”.
“Somewhere, at the back of my mind I thought that I will be recruited in Delhi Metro as there were a lot of vacancy for women. But fate had other plans,” Archana Kumari who works as a Switchboard Operator at a State Electricity Board she recently joined.
“My husband works for the armed forces, so I did not really have compulsion to work. But I loved my field, and was very curious about it. My parents encouraged me to study in college & Siemens enabled it through it’s Dual VET program” she adds.
“My mother was very helpful in taking care of our 8 year old son. He’s kind to all living creatures and always wants to keep them as pets, including lizards” Archana chuckles thinking about her little one. “I miss him a lot but what can I do, I have to work, but as soon as I settle here in this new city, I’ll call him here” Archana explains.
“It’s hard, but I’m in it to win it. It’s been two months here, and I feel I am growing so much as a professional. Still remember the time when I first talked to my senior who asked me out of good faith ‘why have you come here? Why being a woman select a technical field?’ to which I promptly replied, ‘because I love it, and I want to’. There’s been no looking back ever since”.