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Badass Women at Any Age

Oct 29, 2019

Annette Bergeron, P.Eng. MBA, FEC, FCAE, is a Past President at Engineers Canada, and was recognized as one of the Top 25 Women of Influence in Canada. Annette knows firsthand what it is like to work in a male dominated workplace, and is making it her mission to balance out the number of women in engineering for the future. Annette discusses the importance of mentors and sponsors, her DiversifySTEM training tool and all the benefits it can give leaders, and why badasses aren’t able to do it all alone. 

What You Will Hear in This Episode: 

  • What attracted Annette to engineering, and why it’s so common for women engineers to already have had a friend or family as a model for what it takes to get in the profession. 
  • Young women should be encouraged to take classes in the fields of science and math, that can set the foundation for a career such as engineering. 
  • The importance of women to have many mentors in the workplace, to be involved in outside professional organizations, and also to have sponsors. 
  • Badass women know they can take on the world, and have the confidence to also help others along the way up. 
  • While being a badass can be socialized out of us through labels in our childhood like “bossy” or “trouble”, you are never too late to reclaim your power. 
  • You deserve to speak up in meetings, and to confidently share your ideas and wisdom. 
  • Women tend to try harder to fit in and be liked, and oftentimes in business this can lead to others getting mentored and promoted while we watch on the sidelines. 
  • Look for the spark of joy and passion, and focus your energy more on that. 
  • Badass women know it’s okay to seek out new career paths, and that our trajectory can look more like a zig zag then a straight vertical. 
  • DiversifySTEM is an app that serves as a training tool to move the workplace forward and break barriers in company culture. It delivers short micro lessons on promoting gender diversity in STEM workplaces which include actionable steps to make small yet powerful changes in areas including  gender diversity, discrimination, and leadership. 
  • One of Annette’s goals is to level out more of the playing field and have women represent 30% of the workers in engineering. 


  • Young women in high school need role models.” 
  • “Take your kids to your workplace, and expose them to what you do.”
  • “Not all of us fit into the mold that society makes for us.” 
  • “Success looks like everyone having the same opportunity to pursue their career.” 
  • “Find other badasses around you.” 



How Women Can Escape the Likeability Factor 


Engineers Canada