Empowering Excellence: Celebrating Women in STEM with CMKL University

April 11, 2024
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International Women’s Day has its roots in a labor movement, with a historic march in New York City in 1908 where 15,000 women demanded better working conditions and the right to vote.

Throughout history, women worldwide have fought for equality, and on March 8th each year, we come together to honor their efforts. Today, women have made remarkable progress across various careers, from professors and lawyers to businesswomen and engineers. Despite challenges, they're breaking barriers that once seemed impossible.

This year, the fight for equal rights continues globally. In Thailand, there are calls for extended maternity leave; in Germany, demands for better working conditions; and in London, protests for increased education access in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

Here, at CMKL University,  we choose our battle by celebrating International Women's Day 2024 with our event "Byte by Byte: When Women Ignite the Tech Light," designed to especially celebrate women in the STEM field, a somewhat nontraditional field for women but currently gaining more popularity among young women.

The day began with an entertaining panel discussion with notable panelists: Dr. Thavida Maneewarn, CEO of Raina Robotech; Wanwisa Boonchub, co-founder of Conchware, R&D focusing on Swarm Intelligence (S.I.); our very own student, Chutikarn Kanchanaart; and moderator Sally Goldin, Associate Director of Learning Innovation. 

"Back when I first graduated and started working, I would go to customers' factories since I was working on robots and machines; however, people would assume that I was a cosmetic (Mistine) seller.” Dr. Thavida Maneewarn, Founder and Director of Raina Robotech

As a testament to time, today, no one would be surprised that the woman entering the factory is an engineer and not a cosmetics seller. 

Following the panel discussion, participants were separated into small groups with each panelist to discuss a variety of STEM-related issues or any questions they may have. 

"I aim to create a new, less toxic form of media by converting text into interactive content. My goal is to integrate education with gaming, enhancing accessibility and simplicity for all," explained Wanwisa Boonchub, co-founder of Conchware, a pioneering R&D firm specializing in Swarm Intelligence (S.I.).

By democratizing education and providing quality learning materials, we empower younger generations to reach their fullest potential. Additionally, sharing her expertise in entrepreneurship and her experience in creating a start-up. 

"It won't be easy, but my passion lies in leveraging robotics to assist humanity," expressed Dr. Thavida Maneewarn, Founder and Director of Raina Robotechn, during the group discussion. 

She articulated her aspirations of employing robotics in sustainable agriculture and organic farming, aiming to contribute positively to society and lessen human workload. 

Dr. Maneewarn also emphasized the importance of our young participants to innovate and contribute towards improving the present for a brighter future.

These sessions provided guests with a unique chance to engage directly with our speakers and gain invaluable insights.

As the day draws to a close, let's reflect on the words of our moderator, Sally Goldin: “Your journey will always have twists and turns, so focus on building a strong foundation and follow your heart. Don’t limit yourself to existing job opportunities, as there will be more coming for you, so keep an open mind and be willing to learn as you go.”

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