Women in Aviation - Brenda Pham

by Brenda Pham on Mar 10 2019
Hello there, my name is Brenda Pham, and I am a Software Engineer at ACSS, and L3 and Thales company. I have had this role since I joined the company in May 2006, and my day-to-day tasks include software development with certification documents, requirements, coding, test cases and procedure development to meet project schedule milestones for each TSO submittal program.

During my time at ACSS, I have worked hard to challenge myself, and expand my technical skillset. I am able to refine both my technical and professional skills for software and systems development with every single TSO submittal program that I am a part of, and this is an element of my role that I really enjoy.

For me, the fact that engineering is such a male dominated industry has always been one of my inspirations to be a part of the industry. I have always known that my capabilities are equal to that of a man, and that the simple fact that I am a woman is irrelevant from my job description. What I enjoy about my role at ACSS is that I am treated well by the company and my team, not because I am a woman, but because I am good at my job. Another inspiration for me to develop my career as a software engineer has been that there is always the opportunity to grow and refine my skills – every day is a learning opportunity and that is something that I embrace. The most important thing that I have learned in the industry is to remain open minded, and keep up to date with new technologies each and every day. Because of this, my technical skills have grown so much, and continue to grow, and I would say that this is my biggest achievement at L3.

Personally, I have not experienced any prejudices or faced any stereotypes since being a minority in the industry (which, factually I have been since my career started). I would say that I am lucky not to have faced these issues, but that shouldn’t be the case as no one should expect to face stereotypes or prejudices in the work place. Therefore, I will not say that it is lucky – I will say that it is how it should be. A word of advice that I would say to other women that wish to join the aviation industry would be as follows - when it comes to the technical areas of aviation, such as aircraft mechanics, or engineering sciences, the environment is largely male dominated. However, there are many companies that are making it easier for young female talent to flourish. Various companies already have initiative programs for career and support for women. There’s a big push to encourage more women in to aviation – if you have decision making, judgment, team working, navigation, problem-solving and communicating skills, then you are just as ready as any man to enter the industry.