Women in Engineering: Shaping the World

  • Read exclusive interviews with female engineers

Prof. H Alicia Kim

Alicia Kim © SpringerJacobs Scholar Chair Professor

Professor in Structural and Material Optimization, University of California, San Diego, USA

Member of the Editorial Board of SN Applied Sciences.

Review editor for Structural and Multidisciplinary Optimization.

Tell us about your background: 

I am an aerospace engineer with my bachelors and PhD degrees from the University of Sydney, Australia. My research is primarily in developing design optimization methods for structures and materials including topology optimization. I started my career in the UK, 15 years as an academic, then moved to the University of California San Diego in 2015.

Why did you become an engineer? 

I liked working with mathematics and sciences and I wanted to work in a related area that makes a difference to the quality of life. So engineering was an obvious career path. I also did not think I would be smart enough to go to a graduate school and engineering seemed to me a stable career option. When I was offered an opportunity to do a PhD, I loved research and being able to push and challenge the frontier of understanding. My research interests are in the fundamental engineering sciences and I have a wide range of interests so the academia is ideal for me.

What advice would you give to young women interested in science and engineering? 

I believe science and engineering today is a career that can make the most immediate impact to the widest sector of the society and change the course of our future. Contributing towards this, however small it may be, is an exciting proposition to me and it is extremely rewarding. There are infinite challenges and unresolved questions that could interest everyone. There is a huge variety of jobs that require science and engineering and specializing in the fields open many doors and create new opportunities in this rapidly changing world.


© Springer

SN Applied Sciences is a multi-disciplinary, peer-reviewed journal for the disciplines of Chemistry, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Engineering, Materials Science and Physics. It fosters sound scientific discovery to solve practical problems. The journal encourages quality, scientifically valid, original articles which present a good understanding of scientific knowledge, experiments and theories, methods and techniques, as well as interdisciplinary linkages.

© Springer

Structural and Multidisciplinary Optimization publishes original research papers, review articles, industrial applications, brief notes, educational articles, book reviews, conference diary, forum section, discussions on papers, authors´ replies, obituaries, announcements and society news.

Return to the Women in Engineering page

Women in Engineering

Read exclusive interviews with female engineers and enjoy free access to selected content until July 20.