Cristina Abascal Ruiz, University College Dublin (UCD) was nominated by the EDI committee of Chemical & Bioprocess engineering of UCD for the SSPC Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Award. This award recognises an individual, group or organisation that has demonstrated exceptional commitment to the promotion or advancement of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI).
The EDI (Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion) committee of the Chemical & Bioprocess School at UCD (is dedicated to fostering inclusivity and fairness throughout the year, striving to create a more welcoming environment for everyone involved.
This year, the committee organized a noteworthy initiative called “Girls just wanna be…engineers!” This event was conceived by Cristina Abascal Ruiz, a PhD student and committee member, with the primary objective of shining a spotlight on the invaluable contributions of women in the field of engineering. The event took place on June 23rd, coinciding with Women in Engineering Day, and specifically targeted female PhD and Postdoc students from various engineering disciplines.
The main purpose of the event was to showcase the diverse career paths of five accomplished women engineers, shedding light on the challenges they have faced through a feminist lens. By sharing their experiences, the event aimed to foster empathy and inspire attendees to pursue their ambitions with confidence. In addition to the presentations, a networking session and a social activity were organized, allowing participants to connect with one another and build supportive relationships.
This initiative was particularly significant due to its potential to dismantle barriers and stereotypes in the field of engineering, which unfortunately remains predominantly male-dominated. Recognizing the positive impact of this event, the committee decided to apply for an award to gain recognition and support for future iterations of the initiative. Our aspiration is to expand the event’s capacity, welcoming students from all levels of study, including undergraduate, master’s, and postgraduate programs. Furthermore, our aim to increase its visibility through various media channels within the UCD community, effectively reaching a wider audience and promoting the importance of gender diversity in engineering.