Meet the Team

Quickfacts about Kirthi

Favourite colour: Green 

Greatest love: The ocean  

Somewhere I would love to visit: Ghana 

Favourite words to live by: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi  

Kirthi Chetty

Hello and welcome to STEM femme. I am currently in my final year of Chemical Engineering at the University of Cape Town (UCT). I decided to start STEM femme after a conversation with my 16-year-old sister. She was struggling to decide what she might like to study. She knew she enjoyed biology, and specifically anatomy, but didn’t know what tertiary study options or, even, career options existed that would align to her interests. I then realised that so many young girls find themselves in her position. They have a particular interest or passion in a STEM-related field but lack the knowledge to pursue it. They then end up giving up their passion or following a “safer” route, purely because of lack of resources, information or support. As someone who has struggled through the same but was lucky enough to have found my way, I decided that I should try to help others where I could – hence STEM femme was born. I hope that this platform will be able to motivate, inspire, encourage and support young girls to pursue their passions and believe in their abilities and I look forward to engaging with the brilliant young minds that will make up our future.  

Catherine Harrison

Hi everyone!  

I’m Cathy and I am also in my final year of chemical engineering at UCT. When Kirthi told me about the conversation with her sister, I realised that before university I also did not have a very good idea of what sort of career path that I could follow within the STEM space. I ended up choosing chemical engineering because I thought, “I like chemistry, and everyone keeps telling me that if I do engineering, I will be able to find a job one day.” I’m not too sure that if I had known more about STEM careers I would have chosen differently, but I really want to help give other young women the access to learn more about how their passion and ideas can be brought to the forefront in the future.  

Quickfacts about Cathy:

Favourite colour: Purple 

Hogwarts house: Ravenclaw 

Somewhere I would love to visit: Eastern Europe 

A possible future endeavour: Working towards making engineering more environmentally sustainable.