“I WAS FASCINATED BY MECHANICS COMPONENTS WHEN I WAS A CHILD”
Hello Ting-Hua! How come you began study engineering?
I was fascinated by mechanics components when I was a child. I still remember I was really in to elevator buttons and panels and therefore being an elevator servicer was one of my dream. In Taiwan, students need to decide to study further in social society/literature or science/biology/engineering at second grade in high school. In addition to my interests, I felt science and engineering were much more challenging than social society and literature. Therefore, it was quite nature to make a decision to study in engineering in both high school and then university.
You work as Sales and Application engineer at Volvo Penta, what does it mean?
Volvo Penta is a quite global company. There are quite many application engineers and sales personnel work in whole the world. As a Sales and Application Engineer, we sit in the center office in Sweden and provide technical supports to our local application engineers and sales personnel who face our customers on daily base. Sometimes we also meet customers directly to introduce our products and also reflect their opinions to our Product Development to improve our products. If there are customers interested in our product, we do evaluations for them to see how would their boats perform if powered by our engines and propulsion system.
Tell us about a typical day at work!
The day usually starts with a cup of coffee and reading emails. After answering urgent questions from our local application engineers, I start to do evaluation work. Evaluation is to estimate boats’ performance while they equipped our engines and propulsion system and make sure if boats’ hull design allow installation of our products or not. Rhino, excel and our own developed software, MPS, is the three most important software I use every day. It hard to say how much time it would take for evaluation work, usually depending on how complicated the case is. When evaluation is done, report writing is the next stop. There is no fix schedule for me to do evaluation and report writing; many discussions, meetings, and answering any other pump-up questions would usually happen in between. The only things fixed are fika in the morning and afternoon, which really important while working in Sweden!
How do you think Volvo Penta promotes gender equality?
I’m the only female in my department. It’s really nice that I don’t feel any difference from others when sharing work loading and responsibilities. There are also quite many outstanding female managers in the company. However, since there are much more males than females in the company, it for sure still can be improved in many ways, toilet facilities for example.
I made the biggest decision in my life, coming to Sweden.
You’re originally from Taiwan, why did you move to Sweden?
I’d like to study my master in a foreign country and I was only aiming to study in Naval Architecture. Chalmers has strong reputation and knowledge in this area, which I got several recommendations from my friends and my professors in university. On top of these, I was quite lucky to get the scholarship from Chalmers. Thus, I made the biggest decision in my life, coming to Sweden.
What’s the best with Sweden?
Equality and respect. People would not be treated differently because of different gender, different work position or different age. People are almost always polite and respect to each other. I’m also enjoy that people always discuss things rationally and without personal emotion.
In Taiwan you were one of the 5% best students in your class, are you a natural talent or have you needed to study a lot?
There were so many talented and smart student in my university. I needed to study a lot to be one of the 5% best in the class.
Finally, what’s your idea of perfect happiness?
Feel satisfied and be able to share with others, be helpful. Once I feel satisfied, there are no complaints in my life. Sharing with and helping others always bring happiness to me. Of course good connections with families and friends are always important as well.
[The interview was created April 25th, 2015]