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Khentsane Mgiba has always been in love with electricity. Something about it has intrigued her since childhood and it was an obvious choice when she had to decide what course to pursue in tertiary engineering. Before she could finish her studies however, she hit a brick wall: she could no longer afford to pay for her studies.

For most young black women it is sometimes surprising to find other women in the field. Just like Khentsane, the cost is often too high or they get discouraged in pursuing the field because it is a “man’s job.” Thankfully, these stereotypes are being eroded by forward thinking Brands. The ABB Education Trust Fund for women in engineering helped finance her final year of studies. To ease the process, she moved closer to school to eliminate her commute time.

ABB is a global, multi-national company, and a pioneering leader in the digital space. By harnessing the untapped potential of the youth, they are not only facilitating the provision of on-trend services and solutions globally, but are also ensuring that women fill top management positions in their company.

Khentsane now works for the company as a Tender Quotation Specialist and has since been allocated a mentor to see her through the journey to registering with the Engineering Council of South Africa, and most importantly, to assist in paving her career in engineering. “I told myself I’m in the right place – this is the dream company,” she recalls of her inspiring journey to becoming a badass black female engineer.

Through their education initiatives, ABB is not only empowering the future female leaders of tomorrow, but is also reinventing the field of engineering in South Africa. It is empowering to believe in yourself and your dreams, but it is a completely whole new ball of motivation to have a company committed to backing up your dreams.

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