8th March, International Women's Day

Meet Karen, our head tutor and an extraordinary woman

Karen (pictured on the left), our head tutor, is an extraordinary woman and we could not have a better role model to be presented to you on the International Women’s Day.

Even as a young girl, Karen was always interested in school. She excelled in all subject, but it became quickly obvious that mathematics, physics and chemistry were her preferred ones. First she thought of becoming a teacher. She loved being taught, so no wonder she wanted to stand in front of the pupils herself one day. However, in her last year of Secondary School they had a Career Day and she was roped into studying chemical engineering that led her to a man’s world of oil and gas, working as a process engineer.

It is true, there have been great steps made forward since times when oil and gas industry was nearly exclusively reserved for men and one could only find women either in administrative or human resources roles. The problem, of course, had many layers. But mainly, women were simply not welcome, not encouraged to take on “men’s” studies, like engineering. This has since changed, and more and more women are becoming engineers. Karen is one of such women, excelling throughout her university years, achieving Best Final Year Research Project as well as Best Team Worker awards.

Karen worked in the fast-paced oil and gas industry for ten years. She has always been one of those, quieter workers, never truly recognized members of the team, who clocked in at 6am and out at 6pm, making sure everything has been completed to the highest standards. She took every opportunity to prove herself. But not because she wanted to be recognized, simply because this is how she works, how she is. Absolute perfectionist who will never settle for average.

The modesty is such a beautiful personality trait, yet at the same time, it is a curse. Unless you are vocal, demanding for your work to be “seen”, unfortunately it never is. The culture needs to change first. But, as any change, this too takes time.

Throughout ten years within the industry, Karen travelled the world. She was working on amazing projects in Denmark, Norway, Morocco, China and Malaysia for up to six months at a time. Studying hard, being good at what she does and working hard has helped Karen see the world.

After a decade Karen has decided that she wants to explore other professions as well. She decided to become a teacher. She is now finishing her teaching qualification, and next year she will already stand in front of her pupils, encouraging them to study, to be interested and interesting, telling them that the world is at their fingertips.

We could not be more proud to have a woman like Karen for our head tutor. This way we know our students will get the best teacher there is, whenever they need one and for whatever reason that might be.