In honour of Women & Girls in Science Day and International Women’s Day, two important days marked by the United Nations and celebrated across the globe, we are celebrating the women in our community. As our wonder women are involved in many fields, we decided to focus on specific fields and this year we are highlighting the women in Trust & Identity! Like everything in the world of GÉANT, our trust and identity team is a strong collaboration between women (and men!) all over the globe.
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to our colleagues working for T&I, which shows perfectly in this series.
Let us introduce you to Femke Morsch, born STEM enthusiast.
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Femke Morsch, I work as the Head of Trust and Identity Operations team at SURFnet.
What is your study and professional background?
From an early age on I have been interested in IT and technology. It was therefore logical for me to choose a technical study. It became Biomedical Engineering in which I obtained a master’s degree at Delft University of Technology. After my studies I started working as a trainee at SURFnet. After my internship I became Product Owner/Product Manager for Trust and Identity services. Since 2014 I am head of the Trust and Identity Operations team. This team is responsible for the Dutch R&E identity federation, SURFconext.
How did you end up in STEM?
As a child, I loved tinkering and playing with Lego. At school I was enthusiastic about mathematics, physics and chemistry and I found languages really less interesting. For me it was completely logical to make the choice for a study in STEM. I can not imagine that I would do anything else.
Are there any challenge(s) you face as a woman in STEM (personal, in the sector, in T&I)?
I do not experience any specific challenges as a woman in STEM, but it would be good if more women would choose for T&I. We can always use more (female) talent in trust and identity.
What is it you do in the field of T&I?
I am head of the Trust and Identity Operations team at SURFnet. This team is responsible for all trust and identity services at SURFnet. The team consists of product managers, technical product managers and support engineers. Furthermore I am personally concerned with finances, policies and the roadmap for our services.
Name your greatest experience or achievement in T&I work
From 2011 I am involved in SURFconext, the identity federation in the Netherlands. The number of logins has gone from 2.7 to 118 million per year. I work every day with a fantastic team and we continue to improve on ourselves. I am proud that my ideas about trust and identity, collaboration and operations have made a major contribution to this.
Any inspiring words for our readers?
Girls (and boys) need to see how fun technology is and we should not treat them differently. Let children experience that technology is challenging, fun and for everyone.
From all the men and women at GÉANT, we would like to show our gratitude to the female career tigers, young professionals, researchers, students, mothers, experts, in short all the hard working women contributing to not only trust and identity, but all the work we are doing in R&E networking.
Make sure to keep an eye on the GÉANT blog and social media channels and follow the campaign under #GEANTwomeninSTEM.