Women in Engineering: Career Stories

Our featured women engineers are listed below. We hope you enjoy reading their stories. Expand each career grouping and click on the names listed below to find out more about their career and academic journeys.


Rachel Wilcox

"Being at such an international University with people from all walks of life has taught me so much about my future and what I might want to do with my life. Talking to students in different courses and in my program is a great way to hear about the different options out there."

Sydney Charitos

"Knowing that I wanted to work in research and develop products, engineering was an obvious career choice. Edinburgh’s School of Engineering was ideal for pursuing this interest."

Research Staff

Dr Anna Garcia-Teruel

"Today I am inspired to contribute to the development of renewable energy technologies for a more sustainable planet, and plan to do so with the help of the engineering knowledge that I have obtained during my academic studies."

Dr Karen Donaldson

"I love the knowledge diversity of people that I work with in the Soft Robotics group, which is made up of individuals that have qualifications and knowledge in chemistry, biology, physics and several types of engineering such as mechanical, robotic, marine and electronic as well as computational programming.”

Dr Simona Aracri

“Be confident. Do not let engineering intimidate you. Find what you like and go for it. Be prepared to work hard and always, always keep learning.”

Dr Zeynep Karatza

“I particularly enjoy it when a student asks me a question I can’t answer, as it shows me that I’ve got much more to learn. After all, thought-provoking questions are what made me love research in the first place.”


Elisa Martin Perez

"Speak to as many people as you can about what you are passionate about. This will allow you to learn more about who you aspire to be, and what the area that interests you can offer you."

Gunel Aghabayli

“Do not feel the additional pressure of being a women in engineering. Push past gender stereotypes. Try to do your best in whatever you are doing”

Martina Manes

“Think about the bigger picture, your contribution could really have an impact on people's lives.”


Dr Efthalia Chatzisymeon

"Research and academia is such a rapidly changing and exciting environment. You are always ahead of technical advancements and you have the opportunity to be involved in shaping future policies and practices"

Dr Encarni Medina-Lopez

"I really enjoy the freedom to do the research I want to do, and the opportunities given by the University for personal and professional development. But this position also means working by myself. For me, this is challenging but also very stimulating."

Dr Francisca Martinez-Hergueta

"As a woman in engineering, I have always had support from my family, friends and supervisors, who advised me to follow my instincts. If you are an aspiring engineering, or young student, who is considering wanting to work as an engineer, spend a week working with graduate engineers." 

Dr R Camilla Thomson

I really like that fact that academia offers a unique combination of doing innovative cutting research and teaching other people how to be engineers and what engineering is.

Dr Yuner Huang

"Engineering is not an easy discipline. Things may be difficult but not impossible if you work hard and put your mind towards a topic that you enjoy. It can be a very rewarding career. You get to investigate and try to solve real-world issues."

Professor Rebecca Cheung

“Do your best in whatever is given or available to you at the time and doors will open for you. Walk through the door that you chose to go into and continue to do your best and more doors will open.”

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