Meet Ana Cigarán Romero

I am Ana Cigarán Romero, current Chair of the IEEE Region 8 WIE Committee and Past-WIE Chair of the IEEE Germany Section. I obtained my degree in electrical engineering from Comillas University (ICAI), Madrid in 2010, writing my diploma thesis “Analysis of the Competitiveness Indicators in the Iberian Electricity market” in the Energy Management Direction of Iberdrola.

Since 2011, I have worked at 50Hertz, the Transmission System Operator (TSO) in North-Eastern Germany, as an expert for European inter-TSO cooperation principles for system operation. I have actively participated in the development of the Regional Group Continental Europe Operation Handbook, the ENTSO-E System Operation Network Codes and the conception of inter-TSO system security processes within ENTSO-E and within the Regional Security Coordinators TSCNET and Coreso.

How did you first get involved in IEEE Women in Engineering?
In 2015, being one of the very few active women in the Germany Section of IEEE as part of the Young Professionals Team at that time, I was asked by the Section Chair if I would like to take the role of WIE Chair in Germany. By that time, the WIE network was completely inactive in Germany and I found it a great challenge to reactive it!

Why did you decide to become a WIE member?
I am convinced about the work that IEEE WIE is doing in supporting women in their career and in inspiring young girls and students to further explore the path of STEM. I decided to become a WIE member to actively push this great work and to get to know other amazing women engineers around the world.

What do you wish other people knew about IEEE WIE?
IEEE WIE does not only make a great effort in promoting women engineers in their career, but also pushes the visibility of women (e.g. speakers in conferences) and organizes talks and debates about relevant discussion topics on a big variety of topics closely linked to women engineers such as the (not yet) existing equality between women and men, the visibility problem of women engineers or how to increase the number of females with technical background.

What is it like to be an IEEE WIE Volunteer, and what do you enjoy about it?
Being the Chair of the IEEE WIE Region 8 Subcommittee implies certain time and effort every week as there are many tasks and events to coordinate in the region. Nevertheless, the effort of volunteering is compensated by meeting and getting to learn amazing people within IEEE.  I specially enjoy the positivity that always surrounds the teams working in the organization of a certain initiative or event.

Why do you feel it is important for women to enter into the field of engineering?
I strongly encourage female students to explore science and engineering as we cannot afford to lose anyone with the technical skills to create a sustainable future, improve health, build our cyber and physical infrastructure, and enhance personal and societal security. A diverse set of minds needs to tackle those problems. But we are largely missing out on women’s intelligence, creativity, and values in solving the problems we all face.