Summary of Women in Engineering Forum 2020
On September 22, 2020, a Women in Engineering Forum with the theme of “Facing the Changing World, the Special Role and Future Development of Women Engineers” was successfully held in Nanjing, China, during the conference of IEEE PES APPEEC2020. This forum was jointly organized by World Federation of Engineering Organizations, Women in Engineering (WFEO-WIE), China and Hohai University. And it was supported by Chinese Women CWAST and IEEE WIE Beijing Affinity Group. This Forum is an online and offline integration activity. The attendees include the participants of APPEEC2020, together with teachers and students of local universities.
The forum has four parts: opening panel, Keynote panel, Q&R and brief speech from audience.
The forum was chaired by Dr. Ruomei Li, Chinese member of WFEO WIE, former secretary general of CSEE. Prof. Ping Ju, chair of APPEEC2020, delivered a welcome speech on behalf of the sponsor, Hohai University. He expressed his gratitude to Ms. Ruomei Li and the forum organizers for their hard work and welcomed all the participants. As an electric power engineers leader, he affirmed the achievements and contributions of female engineers in the field of electric power and energy, and wished the conference a complete success.
Then, the opening speech of “Female Engineers in a Changing World” was given by Prof. Yetonde Holloway, Chair of WFEO WIE, Nigeria. In her video speech, she proposed “As engineers, we are all technical soldiers in the fight against COVID-19 and must continue to pursue innovative solutions, to defeat the unseen enemy”.
Prof. Yonghua Lin, the chair of IEEE WIE Beijing Affinity Group, made a speech on “It’s very important for ladies or girls to benefit this world and society”. She mentioned “As a lady or girl in this generation, we do need an equal opportunity for us to work for this world, for us to speak what we think“.
Prof. Ke Gong, the president of WFEO China, made a keynote report entitled “Women’s equality in power system”. He said that “Women must enjoy equal opportunities with boys for employment, leadership, and decision-making and all levels”.
Ms. Hongyang Wang, Academician of Chinese Academy of Engineering，the president of CWAST, gave a keynote report. She specially pointed out that “Women engineers have more power and intelligence than we have imagined.” She affirmed women’s ability and potential in scientific and technological work and gave great encouragement to the development of female professionals. Queen Mother Dr. Delois Blakely, president of New Future Foundation from New York, US, pointed out that “Female workers often have found their ideas as being overlooked, ignorant. In academic and professional fields of engineering, sometimes women are under press”. Therefore, she encourages women ” to embellish your intelligence, and to be a part of the plan to solve the problem.”
Ms. Jing Peng, Chair of WFEO CEIT, gave a keynote report entitled “Holding up half of the sky in multiple crisis”, which mainly described “we could see the excellent performance of women in all sectors and at all moments, both at home and work, demonstrating their great sense of responsibility, outstanding ability and unique charm.”
Dr. Xia Chen from Huazhong University of Science and Technology of China, gave a speech entitled “My Experiences and Feelings during the Covid-19 Epidemic in Wuhan” to share with the audience her experience during the period of the covid-19 epidemic in 2020. Finally, as a female architect,
Jing He, a member of WFEO Committee of Engineering Environment, made a report on “Resilience May Become the Essential Performance of Buildings”, sharing with us the new thinking and challenges brought by the epidemic situation to her professional development.
Then, the meeting entered the Q&A session, which was moderated by Dr. Zhenfei Chen from Hohai University. Q&A were between the scene audience and the 2 online speakers – Dr Jing Peng and Dr Xia Chen. Firstly, Mr. Wenqian Luo, a graduate student from Hohai University, asked Dr. Jing Peng, “What are the advantages of female managers and male managers?” Dr. Jing Peng replied, “Compared with male managers, women have more detailed insight and perceptual thinking, and have unique ways and methods in management” .
Dr. Manyun Huang, a teacher from Hohai University, asked Dr. Xia Chen about her felt during the COVID-19 lockdown in Wuhan. “Do you think that apart from the inconvenience brought by the epidemic, there were some favorable aspects?” Dr. Xia Chen replied, “Because it’s not convenient to go out during the epidemic period, it’s free from the interference of some complicated things. On the contrary, it’s conducive to focus on your own research better.”
Finally, the meeting entered the panel of audience’s brief expre. Firstly, Mengyao Jiang, a doctoral candidate from Hohai University, expressed her gratitude and highest respect to the workers, especially female workers, in fighting the epidemic. She thinks it the best example of the outstanding contribution of women workers. With the development of society, the status of women in society has become more and more important, and cannot be replaced. She said that she would overcome the difficulties and strive to complete the academic requirements. The second one was Dr. Xiaorong Sun, a teacher of Hohai University. She mentioned her three-year working experience in General Electric. Whether it is academic environment or work, women’s foothold is very challenging. Dr. Xiaorong Sun expressed her appreciation and thanks to the guests for their speeches. The third audience of giving opinions was Dr. Ying Zhu. She said all women should unite to make unremitting efforts and faithful struggle for the advancement of women’s career and the development of women’s status.
Finally, Professor Xiuli Wang of Xi’an Jiaotong University summarized“In China, many outstanding women work in the teaching, research and company operation of the electrical power field. They have the moral character of intelligent thinking, hard work and conscientiousness. The IEEE PES WiP Committee of China has done a lot in publicizing women’s performance and promoting women to take on more social responsibilities, which I highly appreciate”.
All the speakers in this conference gave wonderful speeches and attached with PPT report, which brought rich views and suggestions to all audiences. Especially in the questions and interviews, the interactive Q&A provided more specific and detailed solutions, especially for the unique advantages and outstanding contributions of female workers, as well as some new thinking under the current epidemic situation, which made the audience applaud.
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