Une interview de David, un jeune Australien de 24 ans qui donne des conseils et sa vision sur la promotion des femmes 1 an après avoir rejoint la vie professionelle.
David, 24 years, Bachelor of Engineering and Master of Biomedical Engineering from the University of Sydney (USYD) is working in Technology and Business Consulting. He is giving us his insights from Australia.
1. What were the main challenges you faced during your studies?
I found that the workload was quite high at the university I went to, additionally since assessments were continuous throughout the 13 week semester, it meant working constantly and losing weekends.
Additionally, the work was not easy, especially in the first years of university the jump between the level expected at high school and the level expected at uni was sharp. Furthermore the support structures I was used to were no longer present. Finally I would mention that travelling long distances to university is a big drain, try to avoid this if you can.
University is not easy, the best motivation is to enjoy what you are doing, then you will learn and score well.
2. What were the main challenges you faced to find a job?
The biggest issue is knowing what you want to do, especially as what you learn in technical degrees at university do not really prepare you to what business wants and expects.
After you do find out where you want to work and what type of job you want to do, the next challenge is convincing people in the interviews that you are right for the job. This is a challenge in itself as the recruitment process today may require multiple interviews and tests. Be diligent, spend time analysing a company, do you really want to work there? Find out from your family and friends how the industry is, how the roles are and so on. Having your resume looked at by a professional isn’t a bad idea either.
3. What kind of future challenges you think you will have and why (both professional and personal, for example, parental leave…):
There are many possible challenges: job certainty, pressure faced from roles, enjoying your role, being able to get career growth you wanted.
Family wise, I don’t have much experience with this, but I could see working late and prioritising work could be an issue later on. Children would make it harder still, especially as dual incomes may be necessary. Health is also an issue, if you spend 10 hours a day at office you are too drained to do anything else.
4. Do you think/feel that women are privileged during the studies?
At my university there were programs/scholarships to encourage women to get into engineering. I don’t think there is anything wrong in promoting this and I didn’t see any sexism during my time there. On that point I didn’t see any reverse sexism either.
5. Do you think/feel that women are privileged to find a job?
There are many industries in which there are large gender biases (both male and female). I suppose these are gender stereotypes, for instance right now there is a shortage of male school teachers and there are programs trying to address this issue. Likewise I am sure there are programs in other companies where females are not a majority to help them get a foothold. In my experience, no one discriminates based on gender at the interview room anymore. Whether you are qualified and capable is all that matters.
6. Do you think/feel that women are privileged in their job?
I feel companies are doing their best to promote and retain women, these are good initiatives. Many women leave after becoming mothers, many stay. If they want to stay and grow in the business then absolutely this is their right, however it is also their right to leave and prioritise their family. Benefits like paid parental leave have helped in terms of alleviating some financial pressure, I think the workplace is more female friendly now and better for it.
5. Any comments/message to send to young ones who are searching for their education/career path?
I think the biggest point is to find something you like and do it. There is a saying, ‘find your passion, make it your profession and you will never work again’. Take this seriously. Obviously the issue is when you are finishing high school or in university or even in a job you may not know what your passion is, keep experimenting.
During university, it was a requirement to do a couple of internships in order to graduate – this was useful in terms of finding out how industry is, what you like and equally what you don’t like. Apply for everything, even in areas you are not studying, you may never know what you like until you try it. Don’t be afraid to change your degree if you are uncomfortable with it – that’s the best time to change.