School of Chemical Engineering

The University of Queensland’s Dr Mahshid Firouzi has been celebrated as one of 50 dedicated, passionate and resilient women in science across Asia by The Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia (AASSA).

Dr Firouzi is an Advance Queensland Research Fellow in the School of Chemical Engineering, where she works in close collaboration with major companies in the oil and gas industry.

She uses mathematical modelling, big data analytics and laboratory simulation to enhance energy recovery and reduce the associated environmental impacts of these big industries.

“I am interested in fluid dynamics and interfacial interactions of gas–liquid–solid in multiphase flows,” she said.

Dr Firouzi said she had considered a career in medicine early in her career, because she wanted to help others, but decided to stick with chemical engineering when she realised it gave her the opportunity to help solve other critical issues.

“I can make others’ lives better by solving energy and environmental problems,” she said.

“I hope one day I can contribute to curing cardiovascular disease by better understanding heart blood flow through my flow modelling skills.”

Like many who excel in STEM, Dr Firouzi credits her school teachers, as well as her father, for inspiring her passion for science, and hopes to pay that forward by encouraging younger generations to nurture their love of maths and science.

“I want to dedicate my life to science,” she said

“And as a female researcher and engineer I see it as part of my mission to raise the profile of women engineers in Australia, where women in engineering are underrepresented.

“I strongly encourage young women to consider a career in science, as science is all about creativity and curiosity.

“These abilities are not limited to any particular gender, despite outdated stereotypes.”

The AASSA is a forum for scientists and technologists to discuss and provide advice on issues related to science and technology, research and development, and the application of science and technology for socio-economic development. See the full 'Women scientists in Asia' report here.

The UQ Women in Engineering (WE) program is the only university-led and industry-funded program in Australia that supports girls and women to pursue careers in engineering.

By educating them about career paths, supporting them through their studies and providing industry connections to enable qualified female engineers to excel in their careers, the WE program aims to improve gender diversity across engineering and other STEM disciplines. Visit the website for information on how you can help: www.eait.uq.edu.au/about-uq-women-engineering .