Magna was one of the many companies who engaged in IGE (Introduce a Girl to Engineering) Day, marking its debut in this inspiring initiative. The event, aimed at encouraging young girls to pursue careers in engineering and technology, saw enthusiastic engagement from both Magna staff and the girls participating.

Jenny Petersson, HR representative at Magna, emphasized the company’s ambition to increase the representation of women in their workforce.

Merely lamenting the shortage of female employees won’t suffice; we need to think long-term,” she stated. “Introducing the possibility of working as engineers or in tech fields early on is crucial.”

During IGE Day, Magna welcomed a group of teenage girls to their facilities in Mjärdevi and Vårgårda. Female engineers and professionals from various roles within the company shared their career journeys and daily work experiences with the girls. The participants had the opportunity to explore lab environments and learn about product development, aiming to inspire them and deepen their understanding of engineering.

Ulrika Durke, Technical Project Lead at Magna, expressed her support for the initiative, highlighting the importance of providing role models for young girls.

“As a mother of an 18-year-old daughter, I believe it’s crucial to offer inspiration and guidance. What an engineer does can be quite hard to grasp since the work can vary so much. The diversity of engineering careers offers numerous opportunities to align your work with your interests,” she remarked.

Ulrika shared her own experience of lacking female role models in engineering when she began her career, emphasizing the ongoing need for more women in the field. Amihan Mercurio, Product Security Manager at Magna, echoed this sentiment.

“There are still strong societal norms that discourage girls from pursuing technical careers. This is a way for us to give another view of the industry.”

Ulrika Durke, Amihan Mercurio, Magna

Ulrika Durke and Amihan Mercurio at Magna welcomed the girls at IGE Day.

IGE Day also allowed Magna employees to dispel common misconceptions about engineering, such as the perception of solitary work.

“We often perceive engineering as solitary, but within our environment, it thrives on collaboration and social interaction,” remarked Amihan, highlighting the dynamic teamwork culture at Magna.

Among the participants were Linnea, Raya, Shaheed, and Gizelle, who expressed their enthusiasm for being part of the day. 

“I have a strong interest in product development and design, so I believe that a future within engineering really would suit me,” says Raya.

“My mother works here at Magna, so I came to learn more about what she and Magna do. But I believe my own future career will be in architecture,” adds Linnea

Gizelle, inspired by a previous IGE Day visit, expressed her curiosity to learn more.

“Engineering has always been on the top of my list for a future career. I visited Configura last year on IGE-Day and it was really fun and interesting, so I wanted to explore more options within engineering by coming here.” says Gizelle.

Shaheed reflected on the evolving perception of engineering as a career option for women and her own aspirations for the future. 

“In my view engineering has been more of a male dominated field. But I can envision a future for myself as an engineer, or maybe I will become a midwife.”

The girls also recognize the importance of role models and support networks.

“Perhaps engineering hasn’t traditionally been a popular choice for women, but I firmly believe it’s time for a shift. For me as a girl, student and of immigrant background, I think it’s high time we assert ourselves and make our mark, demonstrating our competence and presence,” Raya concludes with agreeing nods from the other girls.