Scientific Cuenca among the leaders of the future
What does this appointment mean to you?
It means the opportunity to meet the current leaders. This distinction allows me to travel to the United States in June, to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where there will be people who won the Nobel Prize. He will be the dean of Hardvard. They are all current leaders, with whom we will be a week to share their experiences.
What does it mean to be a leader of the future?
It is an opportunity to improve the processes of biotechnology. I work with microorganisms. There are many things to improve, and with this distinction, many things can be done because we will meet with the current leaders to see their work.
How did it get selected?
Last year I learned about the GlobalBiotech Revolution call for the 100 leaders of the future. There was an hour to close the call, so I took my chances and sent the request. In my application we had to choose a proposal to solve some problems related to biosecurity, bioterrorism and sustainable agriculture. I chose biosecurity and agriculture. After the request, they did an interview that lasted 20 minutes and I talked about the challenges that Ecuador has. When the interview ended, I felt calm. And in February I was notified that I had been selected as the leader of the future.
In addition to the meeting with the leaders, what other activities can you carry out because you have been selected as the leader of the future?
100 leaders of the future of the whole world were selected. With them, 20 groups were made up of five people. Between February and May we have to prepare a project that must be presented in June. Our group touched on the topic of how to produce protein without being of animal origin. They assigned us a coach from the United States, who is investigating how to produce protein with algae, to advise us and help us. We will present this project in June, and if selected, we will receive a capital to carry out the proposal.
What motivates you to continue working?
The only daily motivation is to do something that you like. We must always read, look, be curious. I come from a very large family. In the background, my parents were proud of me. The main thing was and is to find that their life is different with my help. And that motivates me, giving them a different life. I also met the only woman who was a PhD ten years ago at the University of Azuay. She motivated me. Without your support, I would not have connected with the investigation.
What recommendation would you give to women so they can meet their goals?
We must inform. Women think that only men are scientists because they show it. But there are great women who are scientific. There is an unfair competition. People should know that there are women who have done great things. In my case I have colleagues who do the same as me and earn more. But one must keep fighting. All my studies, all my trips have been given because I won scholarships. I do not have money. Now there are many programs. It's just a matter of taking risks, of doing it, of looking. There's a lot of information. They should not be afraid.
Source: El Mercurio