On Wednesday, November 22, 2023, the Association of Women in Engineering, Science, and Technology (AFIST) celebrated its "Voices of Progress" anniversary event at Oteteleșanu Manor in Bucharest. This event marked a significant milestone for AFIST, as it was not only a celebration of their first year since launching, but also a celebration of two years of remarkable activity. Additionally, it was a celebration of the National Day of the Romanian Researcher, making it a memorable occasion for all in attendance.
The event was organized under the patronage of CNR UNESCO, bringing together prominent representatives from research and innovation, technological transfer, sustainable development, and entrepreneurial environments, as well as representatives from NGOs with a significant impact on society.
His Majesty the Custodian of the Crown was represented by the Head of His Majesty's Household, Mrs. Constanța Iorga, at the "Voices of Progress" event, bringing a touch of prestige to our event.
Key moments and reflections from participants:
Education and Gender Equality: Education is the key to shaping an equitable society. At AFIST, we explore ways to promote gender equality in education, ensuring that every voice is heard and valued. This is a crucial contribution to building a fairer and more inclusive future.
Madlen Şerban, General Secretary CNR UNESCO: Congratulations! I am convinced that the same word will be the concluding word for this event, which has been full of promises since the beginning, and it is also the reason why the CNR UNESCO, after analyzing the activity of AFIST so far and the event proposal, decided to grant the patronage.
Teodora Preoteasa, State Secretary MIPE: Education is essential for us, not only to be supported with money or government policy but also practically through the way we try to prepare our generations for the future.
Luminița Bălălău, Director of the Sustainable Development Department: Education is a crucial tool in the implementation of the 17 sustainable development objectives.
Florian Marin, Member of the European Economic and Social Council: I would like the advisory council for sustainable development that works within this department to be more open to other types of organizations. I think that AFIST would be an essential partner in durable development projects.
Significant Projects in Romania with Societal Impact: It is inspirational to see innovative projects that have a significant impact on our society. These initiatives shape the future of Romania and bring positive change to our communities
Călin Alexandru Ur, ELI-NP Director: We are not very good at the ratio between men and women... here, unfortunately, from 268 employees, we are around 30% women and 70% men. But we have hope; if we look only at the students, more than 50% are female colleagues, so we hope that this problem will be solved in the future.
Remarkable Women in Romania: Celebrating the contributions of remarkable women is crucial for inspiring the new generations of professionals. These women have not only reached heights in their careers but have also opened doors for others. We celebrate such role models and contribute to changing stereotypes in the fields of science and technology.
Nicoleta Marcu, Head of Fundraising Hope and Homes for Children Romania: The hours spent here in the first part of the day were very useful to me because they decided my reading this evening. I have this in my bibliography: proton therapy, heavy ion acceleration, petawatts, and uranium octoxide.
Diana Țarfulea, Director of Engineering Adobe Romania: I am the first generation to study computer science in high school. [...] Ever since my first semester of college, when I got seriously into programming, I had that feeling of home.
Virginia Petre, Head of Works UNSTPB: My story began in this engineering field when I was still in high school. Almost everyone told me that I shouldn't do engineering, but I couldn't see myself doing anything else because I liked it a lot of math and physics.
Daniela Marișcu, Co-founder AquaticaExperience, GP co-founder EVX: The basic idea is to dare and follow your dream by acting because we do not achieve much by dreaming.