Fatima became an engineer
There are female engineers, service technicians, plumbers and technical sales consultants – and the numbers are rising. One of them is Fatima Makhada from Morocco.
It all started with a dream – Fatima wanted to become an engineer. While the goal was clear, the journey was anything but smooth. The entrance examination proved one hurdle too many, meaning Fatima Makhada was unable to start her degree in engineering.
Taking a detour
However, giving up was not an option for Fatima Makhada. Instead, she took a detour via the “Ecole Supérieure de Technologie” in Casablanca, where she completed her technical training after two years. There was now nothing to prevent her studying for her degree, and she was finally presented with her diploma as an engineer in 2013.
What sounds unproblematic was anything but in reality. Only around 10 to 15 percent of the students at her university were women, and the majority of them chose to go into management or HR. As a result, she was often the only woman present at lectures: “You have to block this out and focus on your own goals,” she explains.
A consultant with a headscarf?
Today, she works as technical sales engineer at Geberit in Morocco. She is proud of what she has achieved: “I have never doubted that this profession is the right one for me. This is my decision and my responsibility.”
Nonetheless, a Muslim woman in a headscarf working as a technical sales engineer is still something out of the ordinary in Morocco: “I have seen some puzzled looks in my time.” However, Fatima Makhada is able to break down prejudices, give professional advice and communicate clearly with her customers. “After five minutes, everyone has forgotten that they are discussing technical details with a woman in a headscarf.”