Each year, the University of Waterloo awards HeForShe IMPACT scholarships to outstanding first-year students studying in the fields of science, technology, engineering or mathematics. The $12,000 scholarships are part of the University of Waterloo’s commitment to encourage more young minds to pursue careers in STEM, an area where those who identify as women or non-binary groups are currently underrepresented.
The two Science students who received a scholarship were - Adrianna D'Sa (Chemistry) and Sarah Moser (Mathematical Physics). The other recipients were: Isemi Ekundayo (Computer Engineering), Lindsay Toffolo (Computer Science), Megan Lai (Mechatronic Engineering) and Sally Zhou (Computer Science).
Adrianna D’Sa – Chemistry
For as long as Adrianna D’Sa can remember, she has always been curious about how the world works. As a child, visiting science museums and creating at-home science experiments were staple activities in the D’Sa household.
Now 18, D’Sa’s remained intrigued with the world of STEM and the endless possibilities that vast amounts of information and knowledge offer.
“Professionals in STEM are constantly learning, and they use that knowledge to create things that most people can only dream of,” says D’Sa. “There is never a dull moment when it comes to the field of STEM, as it is constantly evolving and advancing.”
In the future, D’Sa looks forward to creating products that will benefit society, and learning from experienced professionals in the field.
“To all the women considering STEM, do not be discouraged because it is a male-dominated field,” says D’Sa. “If you love STEM, then pursue it — don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t. With hard work and a positive attitude, you can accomplish great things.”
Sarah Moser – Mathematical Physics
Astronomy books, gifted to Sarah Moser at a young age, were the first introductions to STEM for Moser. Now 18, the first-year Mathematical Physics student is eager to network with others who share a passion for science and math.
“My high school teachers were the ones who convinced me study STEM in post-secondary,” says Moser. “I had good luck, having amazing math and science teachers who basically opened my eyes to how cool science is.”
Thanks to these teachers, Moser was inspired to take on this career choice and hopes to create technologies that will continue to make the world a better place.
“STEM is where all the important discoveries happen in our world today,” said Moser. “The discoveries being made in STEM are making the entire world a better place. And since I’m generally a pessimist, I tend to see a lot of bad thing in the world, but STEM provides me with a way to make a difference and make things at least a little better.”
Waterloo is the only Canadian university taking part in the UN Women’s HeForShe IMPACT 10x10x10 initiative to achieve gender parity. As part of this initiative, the University aims to increase representation for female or those who identify as female and non-binary in STEM education and careers, faculty representation, and senior university positions.