Nexus IE is getting involved in the celebration of International Women in Engineering Day #INWED17 on June 23rd. We couldn’t think of a better way to support the message of encouraging young people and women into a male dominated industry than by introducing you to some inspiring females who are doing just that.

Having already met engineering graduate, Laura Tuck in our first interview and Sita, Helaina and Daisy of ‘Girls of Steel’ (an all girls robotics team from East Barnett School), today we talk with Abigail, the final member of Girls of Steel. From an Iraqi background, Abigail lives in North London with her parents and older brother.

Abigail, what else can you tell us about yourself?
I enjoy spending my time doing art, engineering and design work especially.I love doing sports such as Badminton and running too

Sounds like you are a very active and creative person. So what is your current role in the realms of engineering?
I’m the main designer for Girls of Steel and I am in charge of the social media. I am currently studying at East Barnet School, North London. Engineering to me has so many different aspects. STEM and robotics has really inspired me and introduced me to engineering.

What about your recent achievements in the field? 
Since starting VEX Robotics it has felt somewhat like an award to me. My friends and I have all had such an amazing experience this year from winning the UK Nationals, competing in America and so much more. Last year I went to East Barnet Schools’ special award ceremony for RM (Engineering). I was chosen, along with 3 other students, out of 1200 pupils. It was a wonderful experience.

Well done Abigail. It sounds like you are really enjoying exploring engineering. So what else inspires you?
Being a girl inspires me, because it makes me feel strong and powerful, especially in this subject. Also my school too, it has such a great history of robotics teams and great people. It has inspired me to be like that and follow in their footsteps.

That is really great to hear, especially in light of International Women in Engineering Day. What do you like most about engineering?
Being creative. It makes me want to think uniquely and do something new using my mind.

Do you think that engineering is recognised as male dominated field?
Yes! For so long it has always been a male dominated subject, but in the 21st century women all over the world have been getting more involved in engineering and I am happy that me and my friends are among the females who have taken up robotics.

We are happy to see more females and young people getting involved too. What does International Women in Engineering Day mean to you?
It is very inspiring and empowering. It makes me proud to be female and involved in engineering.

Why do you think it is important to encourage woman into engineering roles?
Women are always being underestimated when it comes to engineering in my opinion. Some people aren’t aware of how brilliant of an addition they could be to the engineering world, it would make such a revolution and difference to the world. Just by exposing women to this could really make a change.

What can schools do to engage young people with science and engineering?
Robotics really engaged me. So, if more schools world-wide incoperated that into their school curriculum they would definitely inspire girls and young people to get into STEM subjects.

Do you have any advice for anyone considering a career in engineering?
Go for it, coming from a girl, it’s the best decision I have ever made and it has opened so many doors for me and my future, it’s changed the way I think, design and has inspired me so much to continue to do what I love no matter my gender. Engineering and technology is the future so you’d be missing out if you didn’t get involved.

We agree! Thank you for talking with us Abigail. We wish you and the Girls of Steel all the best wth your future ventures.

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