Stories Of Women in Engineering - Emily De Mol - ALTEN Belgium

Stories Of Women in Engineering – Emily De Mol

Interview with Emily De Mol

My name is Emily and I’m a confirmed consultant at ALTEN Belgium.

In a few words, could you give us your vision of the place of women engineers in the professional world? 

I will start with a feeling that there are more women since I started to work. I think this is good. Women and men are thinking differently. Not that one is better or worse than the other, only that they have different approaches, and, in engineering, this is interesting to have different visions. This is how we can make progress.

How do you put your expertise behind your projects?  

Of course, I have experience and knowledge in some domains but, for me, being an engineer first means that I can learn and apply quickly. Then with my experience, I have also developed my soft skills which are essential and complement my technical skills. When I started my mission, I was supposed to be efficient quite quickly as the content was new for me. I had, therefore, to learn and apply quickly my soft skills, like autonomy, flexibility, communication, and self-confidence.

Which emerging technologies and trends will have the greatest impact on future engineering projects? 

Good question. Probably the easiest answer, the one everyone is thinking about is energy and the associated technologies. This will be a big challenge and it will have a huge impact on our common future.

I’m convinced we will have to change our way of consuming energy, and this is now that it’s playing out. The future engineering projects will have to deal with those technologies.

How did you develop your interest in engineering? What factors influenced your decision to pursue a career in this field?

I have always preferred sciences and mathematics at school. My parents are both engineers and work in completely different sectors, they even don’t have typical engineering jobs. My mom is a teacher, and my father is a human resources director. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, and I thought that being an engineer would be a good solution, opening a lot of possibilities and finally, I was right. 

What does Building Tomorrow’s world mean? How do you see this concept playing out in the context of engineering and innovation?   

It means that we have to meet challenges and innovate in a sustainable way with a positive impact on humans. We support the biggest companies in their engineering projects to improve the human future.

How can engineering contribute to a more sustainable, equitable, and prosperous future?  

Technology has an important role in our society. Engineering contributes to the development of that technology considering the environmental and social challenges. I have kept in mind that motto from a school: ingenuity in the service of a fairer world.

What challenges you the most in your work – your team, your clients, yourself? Do you feel empowered to make decisions?   

A little bit of all 3. The team is changing, different clients are used to working in different ways and I’m a perfectionist. I actually like to have various activities in my job and to have to switch from one subject to the other. I also like now to have some experience in my mission and to be able to put that experience at the service of others and especially help to make decisions, and also by improving the processes.

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