Many know Singapore as the financial hub of Southeast Asia, but that is not all! Singapore is also a center of thriving innovation and economic growth, where the presence of tech titans is felt from the consistent demand for STEM talent to work on the latest and greatest technology.
The 23rd of June is a special day to all women engineers as we celebrate INWED, International Women in Engineering Day. This year on this sunny little island, a group of passionate like-minded women came together to achieve a common goal, that is, to launch the Society of Women Engineers Singapore Affiliate, SWE@SG. With SWE closer to home, we are all truly excited about the endless potential collaboration opportunities this platform can bring to the STEM community.
The launch was themed “All Together: Empowering Women Engineers in Singapore”. You probably guessed – the theme was inspired by SWE’s blog itself. All Together resonated with the organizing core team members, and it was expanded into a 2.5-hour virtual event. With nearly 400 participants from 68 companies and societies joining virtually, it was a great success – with the highlight being the launch ceremony. We were honored to have Dr. Richard Kwok, President of The Institution of Engineers, Singapore (IES) as the Guest of Honor. Dr. Kwok joined the SWE@SG leadership team, including Jamie Neo, President of SWE@SG; Assoc Prof Sierin Lim, Vice President of SWE@SG (Academic); and Dr. Mousumi Bhat, Vice President of SWE@SG (Corporate) on screen for a countdown sequence. It was also a special day for the four university affiliates NTU, NUS, SUTD and SIT that launched together on INWED. The event featured experts from leading engineering firms and academia to discuss key industry policies, actions to enable parity for women leadership in STEM, and trending topics on innovations, access, and progress for all.
In the Innovation for All segment, our speakers shared about the latest innovations and current trends in technologies. We learned that innovation was both a skillset and a mindset that could be nurtured. Factors contributing to responsible innovation included understanding the needs of humanity and lifestyle changes, keeping abreast of ever-changing policies, maintaining stability of the supply chain, and monitoring environmental impact. In the second segment, Access for All, it was amazing to learn that many societies and corporates were actively supporting women’s initiatives in Singapore. Finally, in Progress for All segment, SWE@SG kicked off the “Gender Parity in STEM Leadership” research. The presented data made it clear that now is the time for all-hands on deck to address this issue. We ended the segment with an engaging panel discussion about the topic and actions to propel women into leadership in engineering.
We caught up with the SWE@SG leadership team and here is what they had to say.
“Never under-estimate the collective power of women-in-action! I am thankful to the founding members, exco and committee members whose passion brought us together. Within a few weeks from early February, a couple of us went from chatting to pulling on our contacts and the SWE@SG Affiliate was accredited in March! With the official launch on 23 June, we wanted to create a platform to empower women to succeed and advance in the field of engineering and be recognized for their life-changing contributions as engineers and leaders. Placing our little red dot on the global SWE community, let us work together towards SWE’s vision of a world with gender parity and equality in engineering and technology.” – SWE@SG President, Miss Jamie Neo.
“Thank you all for the overwhelming support. Our journey has just begun. We have only scratched the surface of the problem that is pervasive in leadership in STEM and look forward to starting our research in earnest so as to provide a roadmap for parity in STEM leadership by 2030.” – SWE@SG Vice President (Corporate), Dr. Mousumi Bhat
“Singapore needs more women engineers, and now it is more important than ever that we empower them to Innovate by providing them Access and ensuring their Progress! It takes the whole island of individuals with aligned missions to drive change for women in engineering in Singapore. From industry leaders and professionals, university officials, faculty members, students, to members of our societies. SWE@SG will serve as an inclusive platform, for industry and academia to come together to elevate the engineering and technology profession as the career of choice for women. We invite all of you to join us. Visit our website and social media channels for events, initiatives, and partnerships.” – SWE@SG Vice President (Academic), Prof Sierin Lim.
We would also like to take this opportunity to introduce SWE Singapore exco members.
Join us – All Together, we can make a difference!