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Five incredible women holding their own in the engineering field

Many jobs in STEM are still considered to be suitable for men only. Picture:File

Many jobs in STEM are still considered to be suitable for men only. Picture:File

Published Jun 24, 2022


Yesterday (June 23), was International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) to honour and celebrate the incredible women in the field.

STEM professions are still dominated by men, with the gender pay gap, stereotypes, and other issues.

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A report written by Andaleeb Alam for the United Nations Children’s Fund’s (Unicef) titled Mapping gender equality in STEM from school to work, revealed that globally 18 percent of girls in tertiary education are pursuing STEM studies — compared to 35 percent of boys.

Despite the challenges, women in South Africa are making strides in engineering. Here are five such formidable professionals:

Samantha Zitha

A tender and quotations specialist who holds both a BA and national diploma in Electrical Engineering. “Women in engineering should never be apologetic about their gender, nor should they be contrite about their abilities and talents,” she says.

Ramathabatha Joyce Moganedi

She has a BTech Electrical Engineering (Process Control and Instrumentation), a Management Advancement Programme (MAP), and a Master of Business Administration (MBA).

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Mmatseleng Precious Lefoka

Lefoka has a BTech in Industrial Engineering and is currently a Master’s candidate. She has almost two years’ working experience in industrial engineering, having worked in paint manufacturing and now at ABB.

Kate Bester

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She has a national diploma in Civil Engineering. Bester works as a Jet Demolition contracts and project manager.

Talking about her first controlled implosion, Bester says: “I was expecting a typical movie scene with huge fireballs, rubble being thrown everywhere, and people running and panicking.”

Mannana Johanna Nape

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Nape obtained her national diploma and BTech in Electrical Engineering from the Vaal University of Technology. In 2012 she joined ABB as a graduate trainee, and is now project engineer at Kusile in Mpumalanga, the world’s fourth-largest coal-fired power station.