Gigi Cheung

I BELIEVE A DIVERSIFIED AND BALANCED ENGINEERING WORKFORCE WILL BRING MORE INTERESTING SOLUTIONS TO THE WORLD

Hi Gigi! This is one of our international interviews, and we are very excited about that! Tell us a bit about yourself, who are you and what do you like to do?
Hello! Thank you for inviting me to this interview. I am a mechanical engineer from Hong Kong. I just moved to Gothenburg and started working here earlier this year. I like most watersports, such as wakeboarding and scuba diving, but I would be freezing in the water here. Recently, I have started playing floorball with my colleagues.

You have studied mechanical engineering first at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and then your master at Jönköping University. How come you moved to Jönköping in Sweden for your master’s degree?
It was arbitrary. Just few months before I finished my Bachelor Degree in Hong Kong, my professor introduced Jönköping University to me. At that time, I didn’t know much about Sweden but it sounded special. I am glad I made this decision.

What was the best part during your studies?
The best part of my university life was living together with other students and the friendships we have built. I have so many wonderful memories with them. Especially when I was studying in Jönköping, I shared apartment with few other international students. These exchange students left after each semester and a new group came. During those two years, I had been living with people coming from more than 10 countries, from Spain, Vietnam to Colombia, etc. As you can imagine, we had a very interesting kitchen at “home”.

What do you think is the biggest difference between studying in Sweden and in Hong Kong?
In Sweden, there are more industrial activities. Also, universities have extensive cooperation with the industry, providing more opportunities for engineering students to put knowledge into practice. I had the opportunity to carry out my thesis work with a Swedish metal part manufacturer. Under this project, I developed an application for cost calculation and quotation. It was very encouraging to know that the company had adopted my development.

Things like how ones find passion in what they do, be ambitious about their career or spread positive energy can always motivate and inspire me to keep up with my better self.

In Sweden we have a lack of female engineers, what is the numbers in China? Is there any difference and what you think we can do to increase the numbers of women in the industry?
I would say the situation in China is pretty similar to Sweden and other places. Based on my observation, around 5 percent of engineers in China is female.

Let people know what an engineer does. Many people might still think that engineers must be working with machines or doing a lot of maths. The fact is that engineering can be analysis, problem solving and innovation in the areas of energy generation, housing, transportation to food supply. I believe a diversified and balanced engineering workforce will bring more interesting solutions to the world.

Where do you find all your motivation and inspiration?
Instead of famous people’s stories, I am always influenced by people around me. And I am surrounded by many amazing people. Things like how ones find passion in what they do, be ambitious about their career or spread positive energy can always motivate and inspire me to keep up with my better self.

After your studies you went back to Hong Kong to work as a consultant at Hong Kong Productivity Council, HKPC. How was that, and what experiences do you bring with you?
As a consultant at HKPC, I provided services in technology transfer, consultancy, training and other support services in the area of manufacturing technology, with the aim to help industry move up the value chain. My role focused on assisting manufacturers in diversifying their business into the aviation industry. I worked closely with manufacturers in Hong Kong and Mainland China to develop parts and quality systems according to airworthiness requirements. It was very challenging to comply with these stringent requirements to guarantee a high level of safety. I think these experiences are transferrable to my new position in the automotive industry.

During those two years, I had been living with people coming from more than 10 countries, from Spain, Vietnam to Colombia

This year you decided to return to Sweden and Gothenburg, and now you are working as a Program Office Manager, Manufacturing Engineering at CEVT, China Euro Vehicle Technology AB. What was it that caused you to return, and how do a normal day at work look for you?
After working at HKPC for seven years, I wanted to broaden my exposure and enrich my industrial experience. I liked Sweden so I came back. Gothenburg is a beautiful city and there is a variety of job opportunities for engineers. Of course, I like the people here too.

CEVT is a development centre for future cars of the Geely Group, among them Volvo Cars and the latest launched LYNK & CO. My role is to develop Manufacturing Engineering processes, which are integrated into our complete vehicle development system, covering from strategy, concept to industrialization. This new and advanced system not only ensures safe and effective production of new vehicles, but also enhances Geely’s R&D capability. As part of the international organization, we also work on unifying standards of operations in Europe and China. My normal day at work involves much coordination across different functions and regions within the group.

What do you dream about doing in the future?
I have been enjoying what I do and I hope I will still do in the future.

Finally, have you got any other things you would like to share with us?
Now, you might know more about me and my work. I would also like to let you know more about the city I come from. Enjoy!

Why Hong Kong? 10 Surprising facts about Hong Kong!

[Intervjun skapades den 15 november, 2016]