Girls and young women in technical careers

Girls and technology: young women in technical careers

“Young women in technical careers” has always been a rather unusual combination, but the trend is now changing. And the chances are good that they will succeed, because the need for qualified, motivated young people in the technical fields is growing continuously. It is especially in this area that we would like to become active and pave the way for the transition from school to technical careers for girls and young women with information and projects.

Young women in technical careers: Caren Widmann

Caren Widmann, an industrial engineer at Festo, works in Global Key Account Management as a contact for a major customer in the food industry. You might think that she finds things difficult as a woman in this largely male environment. But Caren Widmann sees things completely differently, contrary to all clichés.


 

It pays to start early

Caren Widmann laid the foundation for her career at an early stage. At the tender age of twelve years, she worked under the guidance of her father on a motorhome and was fascinated by its technical refinements, while other girls her age had completely different things in mind. The fact that Caren Widmann has a brother who is a technology enthusiast and chose physics as an option at grammar school also led her to elect for a technical career. "Technology has already accompanied me my whole life."

 

This was followed by a sandwich degree course, on which Caren Widmann decided because of the combination of theory and practice which it offered . At the beginning of this course, she needed to find a suitable partner company that could provide the necessary practical content. "My choice here fell quickly to Festo. The company has a long history of success and is very future-oriented." It was important for her to have an employer with an open ear for students' own ideas who would allow students the opportunity to make a difference.

 

Motivation is the vital factor

Today, Caren Widmann is a member of Festo's permanent staff and has in no way lost her enthusiasm for technology. Among the reasons for this is her versatile and varied daily work. She provides customers with technical advice and practical assistance, maintains customer relationships and visited works worldwide. She supports projects and creates strategies for client companies. "Recently I made a business trip to Greece and Mexico to lead a training session. And every now and then I am sent to France, Italy or UK. During these trips, I gain an insight into different production processes in customers' factories. Recently, I visited a manufacturer of ice. Here today, there tomorrow - it is never boring," reports Caren Widmann happily.

 

It does not worry Caren Widmann that she has chosen a profession in a male-dominated field. On the contrary: "I find working with my male colleagues very refreshing. It's the mixture that makes it interesting." Caren Widmann is one of the only two female Key Account Managers in the 52-strong department. However, she has long since been recognized and accepted as competent by her male colleagues. "There is no difference in the way you are treated, whether you are a man or a woman. Not within Festo, and not during visits to customers. It is simply important to display motivation in accepting challenges and not let setbacks get you down," laughs the 26-year-old.

 

Making the right choice

Choosing the right employer is just as important as an enthusiasm for technology. The reason why Caren Widmann decided to join Festo was the extensive staff training which it provides - after all, it is training and knowledge which are the key factors for new technologies and progress. The dynamics of technology and innovation are driven primarily through new knowledge and highly trained people. Skilled staff with first-class training are a prerequisite for the successful implementation of new products. Caren Widmann agrees: "Here I feel I am in good hands."

 


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