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Marie Tapas

Filipina scholar in Science-Technology-Engineering-Math Career

BY JE BABATE – IN CELEBERATION  of International Women’s Day (March 8th), we are focusing on the growing role that women are playing in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers, which are predominantly male-dominated.

I caught up with our Filipina scholar in Australia, Marie Joshua (Josh) Tapas for a Q&A interview.

Josh finished her Bachelors and Master’s Degree in Materials Engineering from the University of the Philippines-Diliman. She moved to Sydney to do an industry-funded PhD on concrete durability at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) and now currently works as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the same University.

  1. What does this year’s theme EachforEqual mean to you?

For me, it means that each of us must do our share in advocating equal rights for women. Our individual actions combined together are very powerful to create awareness and trigger the change that we all want to achieve. So if all of us contribute, the sooner we will attain women equality in every part of the world.

  1. What advice would you give to a young female considering a career or education in the technology industry?

Technology is universal. Thus, it bridges the world which means that the opportunities are endless. You can work in the academe, in the industry, in your home country or even overseas.

Technology is also exciting because it offers solutions. Hence, every break through, no matter how small, contributes to making the lives of people better. So to a young female who has the necessary skills, drive and the passion for the fast moving and very demanding technology industry, my advice is by all means go for it. It will definitely be challenging but it will also be an incredibly rewarding career. There’s a lot of women who have already made their mark in the industry and you can be the next.

  1. On international women’s day what is the most important message you want to send out to young women thinking about their careers?

Choosing an appropriate career is not always easy especially since this starts from a young age when we enter the University. For some, normally it’s a career chosen by parents. For some, it can be just out of circumstances and for a few lucky ones, as easy as their passion in life.

Whatever the case may be, do not let anyone limit your options. It is never too late to follow your dreams and always remember you can be anything you want to be if you put your mind into it. It may not always be a walk in the park, but with hard work and perseverance, success is never far away.