RPS celebrates the United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science

11.02.19

RPS is excited to celebrate the United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science on February 11th. To understand what a career in science offers, we interviewed several staff members. These women use their deep expertise in a variety of sectors to provide complex solutions to our clients and solve challenging problems.

Here are some of their responses:

Ashley Parker, Oceanographer  - Australia

What inspired you to choose a career in science?

Since I was a child I have been incredibly interested in how the world around me works, and why. I wanted a hands-on career that encouraged perpetual learning and a high level of skill, to satisfy my love of the ocean and overwhelming curiosity of the mechanisms driving the natural world.

What do you like most about your job?

I am incredibly fortunate to be working with some of the best scientists in their respective fields. Not only are they great at what they do but they are patient, supportive, and encouraging. I have many opportunities

Why do you think it is important for women and girls to consider careers in science?

A career in science can be challenging but also incredibly rewarding. You will work with very passionate and devoted people, from all walks of life, with a common curiosity and varied perspectives.

Victoria PhillipsDirector Explosive Remnants of War (Marine) - United Kingdom

What do you like most about your job?

I love the diversity of my job and that every day and every project we work on is different. I never thought I would work in a job involving UXO detection and disposal I didn’t even know that these roles existed, but its certainly an exciting role and I get to work in very diverse places all over the world. I love that I get to travel and work with people from all over the world. I also am continually learning about new survey techniques and ways to improve how we do things so the job is always challenging and so far never gets too boring and mundane.

Why do you think it is important for women and girls to consider careers in science?

I think it’s important for anyone to have a career that they enjoy and are passionate about and Science based careers are certainly interesting and challenging. It is difficult when you are at school to know what you want to do as a career or even what is available so perhaps science-based careers get overlooked as people don’t understand what they can do. However, I would recommend to any women or girls to take a look at what is out there because there are so many exciting and challenging science-based roles that they could pursue.

Luz Zarate, Physical Oceanographer - United States of America 

What do you like most about your job?

I enjoy my work, my workplace, and my co-workers. Being in a group with diverse projects always keeps me captivated and enthusiastic to know what is next to come. Having the opportunity to learn and grow, personally and professionally, is what I like the most about this job.

Why do you think it is important for women and girls to consider careers in science?

I believe that naturally women and men possess different skills that complement each other, and in the spirit of our new behaviors, how we complement each other reinforces the fact that we are stronger together. Supporting diversity requires active efforts, and I believe that we need to work together to foster a community that embraces diversity to have a positive impact in the next generations.  To me, being an advocate of girls in STEM, means telling girls that there is no goal that they cannot pursue.

Simona Caruso, Geohazard Consultant - United Kingdom

What do you like most about your job?

It is the challenge and the opportunity to learn more during every project. It is the possibility to work on frontier areas on data that no many others had the luxury to access to. What I do is not black or white and not even grey, it’s geology and geophysics, and everything in it is the result of an interpretation based on experience, educated decisions and team complicity. The best reward is often knowing that nobody else has done it before and to see a Client appreciating and using the work done.

Who has inspired you most?

My family for start, but also good teachers at school and professors at university which have always motivated me to perform better and not to fear challenges. Through them I learn that technical skills are a powerful tool which once mastered can help identify yourself out from a group of many. My former colleagues have also contributed to my career progress; I had the pleasure to learn from a few very talented women and I hope to have left something to them in return. At last, but not less valuable is to have a husband that understands and supports my work together with a little daughter that sometimes runs away saying ”shhh I am working on my PhD!”