Marieke Huisman, professor in Software Reliability and head of the FMT (Formal Methods and Tools) Group and chair of the Computer Science department at the Faculty of EEMCS, is one of two recipients of the 2023 Athena Awards.
Nominated by the Female Faculty Network Twente, Prof. Huisman is honoured for her impactful contributions, role modelling, and dedication to diversity. As a passionate advocate for diversity, Huisman sees herself not just as a professor but as a role model for female students. Leading by example, she supports and inspires other women. "Is there anything I can do to help you move forward?" she asks.
Throughout her career, Prof. Huisman pursued her passion for computer science, defying gender stereotypes. Her advice to aspiring female researchers? "If you think you might like it, go for it, because you can definitely do it!" Beyond her impactful research, Prof. Huisman actively works to spotlight women's achievements in computer science. Her past (shared) initiatives, like the Alice&Eve event, highlight her commitment to diversity.
Looking ahead, Prof. Huisman envisions efforts to showcase women's accomplishments in computer science. Her expertise in software reliability reflects her commitment to advancing technology in a predominantly male environment.
In her interview with NWO, Huisman emphasises the significance of female representation in the field of computer science. "I feel very honoured," she shared, highlighting the ongoing importance of inspiring female figures in a domain where women continue to be underrepresented.
Professor Huisman has been an inspirational role model for generations of students and colleagues in Computer Sciences, a field in which representation by women is scarce. Next to her outstanding research activities, the committee admires the positive changes prof. Huisman established as institute director and chair of the ambassador network regarding work-life balance, equal opportunities for women, and diversity and inclusion at conferences. Furthermore, the committee praises her efforts in the field to attract more girls in computer sciences. The event ‘Alice & Eve, a celebration of women in computing’ that she co-created is a good example of these efforts
The Athena Award honours exceptional female researchers, recognizing them as vital role models for others in the scientific community. These role models inspire aspiring female researchers, showcasing the potential for successful careers in science. Given the low representation of women, especially in senior roles in (natural) sciences, the NWO Domain Science presents the Athena Award to spotlight accomplished women in these disciplines. The aim is to bridge the gender gap, emphasizing the significance of diversity and inclusion for excellence in scientific pursuits.