Far too few women are educated in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). To inspire the new generation of women, VHTO organizes the Girls' Day on April 15, during which girls between the ages of 10 and 15 are introduced to science, technology, and IT. The University of Twente also takes part in this event, to introduce girls to these sectors, so that they have the opportunity to develop their interests and to use their talents.
Vasso Gkatsi, Mumpy Das and Daria Nemashkalo - researchers within the Power Electronic & Electromagnetic Compatibility (PE) group of the faculty of EEMCS, under supervision of Professor Frank Leferink - take part in this event on behalf of the University of Twente. Two schools are visited online, namely the Greijdanus Christelijke Middelbare School in Zwolle and the Dr. Nassau College in Beilen. A total of 40 girls will be provided with an interactive lesson in which the researchers show the girls how fun and important it is to work in electrical engineering.
Before Girls' Day takes place, Vasso, Daria and Mumpy have already put the girls to work with several questions, because; what do the girls already know? Have the girls ever heard of electrical engineering and do they know what electrical engineers do? Can the girls think of anything in their house or classroom that might have to do with electrical engineering? “What the girls may not know is that electrical engineering affects us all - from our phones to our laptops, to the light switches in our homes, electrical engineering is all around us!”, says Vasso Gkatski.
During Girls’ Day, the girls will learn about the impact of electrical engineering on our society and which opportunities are ahead of them. Vasso: “We want to show to the girls all the opportunities they have and also how fun and important it is for women to work in scientific and technological areas. They should know that nothing should be able to stop them from accomplishing their dreams and goals and we hope that we can show them at least a small part of what awaits these powerful future women.” Even becoming an active professor such as Flavia Grassi from our partner university Politecnico di Milano is within the young girls' reach.
After the researchers have explained everything about electrical engineering, the girls can start discovering it themselves. The schools will receive a mystery box. We will not reveal what it is yet, but with the contents of the box they dive into the world of electrical engineering and they can discover the possibilities of energy!
Within the PE group, the researchers are all involved in the Electromagnetic Compatibility research group. They are working on topics such as power supply (ETOPIA), electromagnetic risk management (PETER), and smart cities (SCENT).
Read more about these international research projects on their website.