Bristol MSc student attends IWD celebration in Vienna

Last week, University of Bristol student Annabel McGrath attended a special event in Vienna to celebrate International Women's Day, hosted by the IAEA. Annabel is currently working towards an MSc in Nuclear Science and Engineering. Read on for her reflections on the event!

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) works to address the underrepresentation of women in the nuclear field through the IAEA Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellowship Programme (MSCFP) and the Lise Meitner Programme (LMP). I was fortunate to be awarded the Fellowship earlier this year, which has provided me with a scholarship for my Master’s degree and also the opportunity for an internship facilitated by the IAEA.

A diverse group of five women pose in front of a blue banner. On the banner are the slogans Women in Science, and Nuclear Needs Women, as well as the IAEA logo. The group are also holding up a large sign which says Nuclear Needs Women.
Annabel McGrath (second from the right) and other fellowship recipients in Vienna!

In celebration of International Women’s Day, the IAEA invited all of us fellows to its headquarters in Vienna, Austria, to exchange ideas and strengthen our network and leadership skills. It also gave us the opportunity for us to meet industry experts and discuss the wide range of careers paths available within the nuclear sector. This two-day event kicked off with a panel discussion from the Director General of the IAEA, involving representatives of the Brazilian, Japanese, US, Korean and African Energy Agencies.

The IAEA building against a cloudy sky. In the foreground is a wall with the entrance sign which says IAEA: International Atomic Energy Agency.

These discussions were centred around the underrepresentation of women in the nuclear sector and the importance of Nuclear Energy in reaching the 2050 net-zero goal. Throughout the event we heard from leading organisations in nuclear such as, Urenco, Hitachi Energy and Walter Tosto, to name a few. We also heard from ambassadors representing the Member States on breaking gender barriers in the field and building a future generation of women professionals and leaders in the nuclear industry.

It was a privilege to be invited to contribute to such an inspiring event, looking to a brighter future with more women in nuclear!

(Words and photos kindly provided by Annabel McGrath)

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