The UCL Department of Chemical Engineering is committed to supporting the advancement of women in engineering.
Meet Our Female Scientists!
|Name||Why I chose a career in STEM|
Engineering is the perfect profession for women, as women tend to be practically-minded, skilled at multi-tasking and great at team-working (in fact, had engineering been ‘invented’ today I am fairly sure it would have been dominated by women for exactly these reasons!) As it stands, the profession urgently needs more women to help solve our key global challenges, problems that can only be solved by diverse teams of engineers with different skills sets.
(Professor, Deputy Head of ED&I)
|The possibility to use scientific findings to solve real world problems inspired me to follow a career in engineering. I currently lead a team of researchers investigating the flows of complex mixtures. These mixtures are common in modern consumer goods such as healthcare and cosmetics formulations (toothpastes, creams), pharmaceuticals, food and in energy industries. I am also passionate about participation of women in engineering which I actively promote through my role as Deputy Head of ED&I.|
(Professor, Director of UCL EAST)
Engineering is synonym of innovation and creation; it has given me the tools to tackle a variety of different challenges but above all the forma mentis to expand my horizons, see the connections between things and work at the intersection between different subjects. In a world that is changing, engineers will always be on the front line to solve the biggest challenges affecting people’s lives and the planet, so to create a better world.
Michaela Pollock (Senior Teaching Fellow)
I am very pleased that I studied engineering at university. I have found the problem-solving, proactive, team-working environment a great place to study and work. It always amazes me the different applications where my engineering knowledge and skills can be applied from complex industrial problems to everyday situations at home. Communication is also a key aspect of engineering and being able to communicate engineering concepts to people from a wide variety of backgrounds is a key skill for engineers.
Sudeshna Basugupta (Senior Teaching Fellow)
Engineering with its scope for innovation and creativity, is the perfect profession for women. With its capacity to embrace interdisciplinary approaches, there can be wide applications reflected in the M.Sc. projects that I am currently leading, including the use of nanoparticles for fracking to improvement of waste water treatment. I am also looking into protecting our geo-heritage sites from the impacts of climate change. I am motivated by BAME women engineers like Yewande Akinola and Roma Agarwal.
Isobel Mackay (Teaching Fellow)
I am a Teaching Fellow, and I specialise in teaching sustainability and renewable energy for our MSc students. I have been fortunate to have had many strong female role models and mentors throughout my career, and I am keen to be able to provide the same for future generations of female engineers. I have always had a passion for STEM outreach as it is important not only to educate, but for people to see what a “real” engineer looks like.
|Julia Schumann (Senior Research Fellow)||Dr. Julia Schumann is a honorary senior research fellow shared between Physics and Chemical Engineering at UCL. After completing her chemistry PhD at the Fritz Haber Institute in Berlin and a post-doctoral research stay at Stanford University, she recently was awarded a fellowship of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation to continue her research here. Julia’s research interests are heterogeneous catalysis for energy conversion. Her advice to the next generation of STEM students: “Follow your interests and seek supportive mentors. Don’t listen to the negative voices!”|
Elena Catalanotti (Research Fellow)
With a background in Chemistry, I started my academic career in Low-Carbon Technologies with a PhD in Chem. Eng., studying Biofuels Combustion, followed by a first Post-doc in Techno-economic assessments of Power Plants with Carbon Capture. After stepping away from research for a few years, to fulfil caring responsibilities, driven by a never-ending passion for the environment, I returned to research with my current role. I joined UCL in September 2018, after being awarded with a Daphne Jackson Fellowship, to study Biomass Gasification coupled with Carbon Capture (BIO-CCS) as an efficient and environmentally benign carbon-negative source of energy. The project involves the development of a Chemical Kinetic Model for Biomass Gasification with in-situ Carbon Capture and Techno-economic analyses and optimization of the process.
Nivedita Kulkarni (Research Fellow)
With a deep interest in green mobility, renewable propulsion and an aim to work for reducing the carbon footprint, I channelized my research interest towards electrochemical modelling for hydrogen Fuel cells and Li-S batteries. I am a Production Engineer by first degree and at present Research fellow at Electrochemical Innovation Lab, working for image-based modelling of Li-S batteries (LiSTAr project). I am a STEM ambassador and passionate about motivating young girls to choose STEM as their career path. The quote that has always helped me to push my boundaries and motivated me throughout my career path is the quote by Swami Vivekananda: ''Arise, awake and stop not till the goal is reached''.
Alessia Matruglio (Research Fellow)
I am an Engineer of Nanotechnology, and now Research Fellow in the Electrochemical Innovation Laboratory group. I am involved in the Faraday Institution's project CATMAT, about the characterization of novel materials for the next-generation cathodes of lithium-ion batteries for electrical vehicles. I moved from the Italian Synchrotron to UK, and I hope my research will contribute to build up a better and cleaner world.
Anh Phan (Research Fellow)
My name is Anh Phan, a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow within the Chem Eng. Dept. at UCL since July 2018, where I contribute to the Horizon 2020 project Science4CleanEnergy developing accurate models for describing fluid transport in porous media. I was awarded my Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from UCL in 2016.
I like new challenges and have willingness to learn new things to widen my knowledge in science, engineering, and technology.
Eleni Grammenou (PhD student)
I had graduated top of my year at the department of Chemical Engineering at NTUA. Additionally, as the only female PhD student in my group, more often than not I find myself thinking that being a woman in engineering comes with two responsibilities: contributing to providing solutions for the present and the future, and constantly breaking stereotypes that engineering is only for men. To excel, we need more women in engineering and to achieve this, we need equal chances.
|I am a PhD researcher investigating fuel cell materials, but I’ve also been heavily involved in outreach and I sit on the departmental ED&I board. I’m glad I can help give my voice to these important issues. One of my favourite quotes is from Marie Curie, who said: “I was taught that the way of progress was neither swift nor easy." Whilst it sums up how I’ve felt at many points through my PhD, I think it also nicely describes the path towards making science more inclusive and open to all.|
PhD Researcher in AdReNa lab, investigating stimuli-responsive Pickering emulsions for drug delivery. Clarissa’s PhD is joint between Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, and School of Pharmacy. Outside of her studies, Clarissa volunteers with the Octavia Foundation as a befriender, giving company to those in the community who need it most.
“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us” – J.R.R. Tolkien
As a PhD Researcher in microfluidics and surfactants, I found the way to combine my excitement in engineering and consumer products by using creativity and problem-solving skills everyday in my work. Having key responsibilities in the core IChemE YMF L&SEC and UCL CheERS society, as well as a member of the ED&I Committee, I am on a mission to prove that women can also be leaders in the engineering community.
I am a PhD researcher in the Centre for Nature inspired Engineering group and working on a SABIC funded project. My project aims at designing a stable yet selective catalyst to produce propylene oxide from propylene via a greener and simple route. Along with research, I am very fond of teaching for which I actively contribute to various outreach activities including Nuffield research placements, In2science and UCL summer schools to inspire, motivate and promote science in young budding scientists. I believe that this is my way of giving back to society and profitable investment for a better future.
My work focuses on studying the degradation of lithium ion batteries using operando X-ray diffraction. I am also co-running UCell, the electrochemical outreach group this year and have enjoyed the challenge of changing the way we do outreach into a virtual form. I’m passionate about people from all communities having access to STEM opportunities.
|My name is Katrina and I am a PhD student in the Electrochemical Innovations Lab of UCL’s Chemical Engineering department. My research focuses on the synthesis and characterization of novel supercapacitor electrode materials to enhance their energy density while maintaining a high power capability. I am excited to be one of the many women changing the narrative of male-dominated STEM fields and I hope young women are empowered to know that there is never a need to compromise femininity for intelligence!|
Simona Migliozzi (PhD student and Teaching Fellow)
My PhD research focuses on various challenges related to complex fluids processing and how to connect these to the rheological design of novel products. Research has always been my passion and I am fascinated by the broadness of topics that Chemical Engineering offers. One of the great aspects of working at UCL ChemEng is the opportunity to promote our discoveries through teaching and outreach. I believe that it is only by passing on our knowledge to new generations that we can achieve real and sustainable progress.
The commercialisation of green energy technologies is crucial in the current world landscape. It’s this conviction that led me to join the Electrochemical Innovation Lab. Here, my PhD goal is to find feasible alternatives to platinum in hydrogen fuel cells in an attempt to make them economically viable. Whilst doing this, I try to be as visible as possible- be it through teaching undergrad labs, UCell outreach or INWED events. I think it’s vital women and BAME engineers increase their profiles to alter the current perception and narrative of who can be, and is, a scientist.
As Nichelle Nichols said, ‘Science is not a boy's game, it's not a girl's game. It's everyone's game.’
Becky is a PhD student joint between Physics and Astronomy and Chemical Engineering. Her research looks at incorporation of nanomaterials into energy storage devices, and developing new techniques for studying batteries with neutrons. She recently worked on an outreach workshop series with PPL PWR funded by the Royal Academy of Engineering to bring engineering skills to secondary school classrooms in East London, challenging students to invent and build their own sustainable devices.
I have chosen a career in Engineering as I believe that what we can achieve should not depend on our gender but on our personal goals. I am a PhD student in Product and Process Systems Engineering Group and my research focuses on the optimization, control and investigation of the impact of uncertainty on reactive distillation processes in collaboration with industry. I have recently been awarded an Associate Fellowship of Higher Education. Having been involved in various departmental teaching activities, I have particularly enjoyed my participation in the Headstart Summer School as this was an opportunity to encourage young female students to pursue a career in STEM and to believe that they can be anything they dream.
|Using my technical knowledge to improve technologies for a greener and sustainable future is my main driver. My project aims to understand the physical and chemical processes within composite electrodes for sodium-ion batteries and transfer this knowledge into engineering new kinds of electrodes. This enables battery development with optimised processing and electrode designs for optimum battery performance.|
During my Ph.D. research, I kept on working in the industry as knowledge transfer and teaching the new generation of scientists is essential to push new technologies forward.
|My project delves into advanced battery materials, in particular solid electrolytes and thin film membranes for protection of lithium metal anode to further enhance energy density in collaboration with industry partners. I am involved with outreach projects UCell, inspiring the next generation in battery and energy storage technologies. I am also double British Champion and International medallist in Taekwondo and am passionate about pursuing academic ambitions alongside any sports/ hobbies!|
|I decided to pursue a career in STEM because I want to give my contribution in creating a sustainable future, indeed my PhD research focuses on the quantification of the environmental impacts and social risks due to the synthesis of nanoparticles. |
After having received my MSc in Environmental Science from the University of Pisa (Italy) and traineeship at the Joint Research Centre - European Commission, I understood that research can actually help in shaping a sustainable future, not only by contributing to the technological development, but also helping during the decision-making process.
UCL Women Engineers
The UCL Student Society of Women Engineers was founded in 2013 with the aim to create a meaningful community body of women in all fields of engineering, at undergraduate and postgraduate student levels, by providing opportunities for networking, professional development, mentoring, and encouraging participation in outreach activities.
This is an active society that constantly works towards engaging female students in STEM fields.