Women at Imperial today
These digitial portraits and profiles were produced for Women at Imperial Week 2019 and 2020. We hope these portraits will help raise awareness and showcase female role models for our students, as well as recognise the many contributions that women make in College, as researchers, teachers, technicians, professional and support staff, and as students.
To ensure a lasting legacy, each framed portrait will be put on display in their home department. We hope in doing so to plant a seed – that departments will build their own collections of portraits of female role models for our students and colleagues. Some have already started. Beyond Women@Imperial Week, we would like to see departments expanding their collections to include people from across the full spectrum of our community. The importance of visible role models, particularly for under-represented groups at the College, cannot be under-estimated.
Women@Imperial 2020 Portraits
Dr Maria Ribera Vicent
"The best advice I can give women starting out in my field is to not be afraid to follow their dreams and ambitions. "
Dr Julie Hartill
"My advice would be to always think about how your gifts and competencies can benefit others as well as yourself."
"I think that, both in work and in life, it’s important to be flexible and adaptable – ready to see a challenge or difficulty as an opportunity to do something different. "
Professor Aimee Morgans
"I have found engineering to be an incredibly welcoming and supportive field, yet at the same time recognise that women (and other minorities) continue to face structural barriers."
Dr Julie Varley
"My advice would be to believe in yourself and follow the path you feel is right for you."
"We all need to nurture our own bubble of self-belief. Base it on hard work, listening to supportive, inspiring voices, and filtering out overly critical ones."
Dr Julia Stawarz
"It is easy to get bogged down in thinking that you are not good enough or need to be a particular kind of person, but we all bring our own unique perspectives to the work that we do."
"A role model in my life is the Italian Nobel laureate Rita Levi Montalcini. I admire her for her intelligence, determination and strength."
Dr Alyssa Gilmore
"Everyone is comprised of many elements. I’m a scientist, a feminist, an activist and an educator. I feel empowered to promote equality in all aspects of my life."
Women@Imperial 2020 Portraits
Dr Aruna Sivakumar
"Don't forget why you're here in the first place. It's the passion for your subject, and the excitement associated with solving problems that will keep you going."
"Working in Outreach means I get to be a part of something that inspires and engages students from a disadvantaged background into the field of STEM. Doing something so rewarding motivates me to work hard every day."
Dr Nina Dutta
"My advice to future students is to always remember your core values and use them to guide decisions you make. Surround yourself with inspiring people who share these values; great things can be achieved when people come together."
"No matter how strong you think you are there will be times you will need help, asking for it is not a sign of weakness but of strength."
"One thing I always live by is to always work hard no matter what obstacles are in the way. There are always going to be hurdles and what defines you is how you are able to get through them and succeed."
Dr Yuki Tokumaru
"I believe that patience, flexibility and a positive attitude are some of the greatest attributes for successful and enjoyable learning. "
"Work at being the best version of yourself that you can be – learn from your mistakes and be kind to yourself and others."
"‘Be the best version of you’. It may be an overused quote but whether you are student or staff you must always be your authentic self no matter the situation, no matter the start you had in life."
"I advise my students to work hard for what they want and on the ideas they are most interested in"
Women@Imperial 2020 Portraits
Professor Amparo Galindo
"I love the diversity of Imperial and seeing how students from all over the world work and grow together."
Dr Amani El-Kholy
"Never be too scared to change and adapt. Nothing you do is wasted. Take risks, be brave, dream big, and most importantly be loud and get heard."
"My key philosophy is always to do the best I can with a smile, and if I can take the time to help someone else along the way, then this will be returned if I need assistance in the future."
"Everything doesn't always work out the way you want to but don't be afraid to try. What matters is that you know you've tried your best and whatever happens, happens."
Read more about Karnyart Samnuan
Claire Dunican, Claire Broderick, Clare Andradi-Brown, and Clare Wilson
"... lead by example and with confidence, form supportive relationships with the people around you and own every success in your life."
Read more about Claire Dunican, Claire Broderick, Clare Andradi-Brown, and Clare Wilson
"Science taught me to think with freedom, question with no fear, and believe that there is always a way for change and improvement."
Dr Despoina Mavridou
"Science and a career in academia are a long journey and not a sprint. Patience, perseverance and hard work are the best way to navigate them."
"My role model was my previous Line Manager, Christine Hobbs... Christine saw something in me and encouraged me to undertake various Facilities Management training courses, which gave me the experience and enabled me, some 8 years later, to apply for a Building Manager’s post"
"I always believe that women born as leaders; they need to recognize their inner power and support each other."
Dr Vicky Salem
"Women shouldn't fear being openly ambitious. It doesn't always go down well but that, and learning to control the devil of imposter syndrome, will carry you."
Read more about Dr Vicky Salem
Professor Neena Modi
"Trailblazers often look in vain for a role model - because they’re the first. And new ideas are unlikely to achieve consensus - because they’re original. If you lead, you’re often alone."
Dr Sonia Kumar
"If we all use our positions in this way, we become part of an even bigger change, making anything possible."
Women@Imperial 2019 Portraits
Professor Fay Dowker
"When I am discouraged, I use my feeling of responsibility to my foremothers who were denied their chances to be mathematicians and physicists and to the younger generation of women coming after me, to inspire me to keep going.”
"Give it your best, trust yourself and your achievements will speak for themselves."
Dr Zahra Sharif Khodaei
"My goal is to inspire more female students to study engineering and be the leaders of tomorrow."
Professor Wendy Barclay
“I believe that good science happens when a group of people can exchange ideas in a manner uninhibited by age, gender, race or experience. It is a privilege to work as a scientist because our world is truly without boundaries."
"Remember that there’s no need to rush, life isn’t a race. I believe that what’s meant to be will be. Work hard and the results will follow."
Dr Angela Kedgley
"Be tenacious when all doesn’t go according to plan. Determine what you want, listen to yourself, and then be brave and make it happen.”
“The advice I would give to a younger colleague is a quote, which I believe is attributed to Steve Martin: ‘Be so good, they can’t ignore you’.”
Sasha Ashbourne Lewis
“I’m willing, focused and proud of the work I do, and inspired about where it will take me in the future.”
Dr Yu-Ting Lin
"In my portrait, the big ‘B’ of the Business School stands out in the background. This reminds me of a trope often found in oriental landscape painting known as ‘tiny people in big places’, used to emphasise harmony with the natural world. It reminds me of the journey that I’ve chosen"
Women@Imperial 2019 Portraits
"Taking on my Imperial 600 role has helped me to recognise what I have to offer. And seeing that what I am doing is affecting positive change within the College has boosted my confidence."
Dr Caroline Howe
"As women, we owe it to ourselves, to those who came before and those who will come after, to pick each other up when we fall and give us that little nudge of encouragement to keep going. It is worth it!"
Read more about Dr Caroline Howe
Dr Surrinder Johal
"When an opportunity comes across, take it with both hands. Don't think, 'I don't know if I can do that.' Just give it a go. If it doesn't work out, it doesn't work out - but just imagine if it does!"
“I have been lucky to have known many incredible women in my life, but my Mum is the woman who inspires me the most."
"One of the women who has influenced me the most is Dr Barbara A. Kennedy, who was my personal tutor at university. She was a straight talker, who pushed her students hard intellectually, and didn’t take any nonsense."
Dr Paola Criscuolo
“If you set high enough standards for yourself, you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for what you deserve.”
"When we empower women to achieve anything they put their minds to, incredible things can happen."
Professor Sara Rankin
Professor of Leukocyte and Stem Cell Biology, National Heart and Lung Institute
Dr Cláudia Custódio
“Aspire to be the role model you would like to have had. Do your part to change this reality."