Yvonne Wassenaar - Why role models are important for women in STEM

In order to see more women in STEM in the future, it’s important to highlight the women who are in it now, have leadership positions and are making a difference. This is why we want to big up Yvonne Wassenaar, CEO of Airware, the world’s number 1 drone analytics company. Wassennaar comes from a long career in leadership in tech and has always been an innovator who embraces new ideas and stays ahead of technological developments.

Wassenaar has been named Woman of Influence in Silicon Valley in 2016 and included in the Boardlist Top 20, and as a WSJ Woman of Note. In an interview during the WiSTEM Conference Awards, she talked about the importance of role models and the need for women to stop holding themselves back and start dreaming big. In her opinion, reaching high and claiming positions in STEM is not only women’s right but also their responsibility to the women of the future. Women need to become the role models they wish they had and not be afraid to take more risks.

“If you see what others don’t and you’re comfortable with risk and trying things out and failing a couple times the rewards are really great” -    Wassenaar, WiSTEM 20117    (Image credit: Airware)

“If you see what others don’t and you’re comfortable with risk and trying things out and failing a couple times the rewards are really great” - Wassenaar, WiSTEM 20117 (Image credit: Airware)

Outside of Airware, Wassenaar is working to increase the number of women in STEM as a member of the board of trustees at Harvey Mudd College, where she has managed to increase the number of female graduates in STEM related subjects from 6% to around 45%. She is also in the board of the Athena Alliance, whose mission is to increase gender parity in the boardroom.

Wassenaar is an inspiration for us both for her business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit and because she understands the importance of female role models being actively involved in achieving gender equality in business. It’s vital to not only celebrate successful female leaders but also see those successful women work to empower the women who are looking up to them. That’s exactly what our own CEO, Sanchita, believes in and what led her to create Shello as a way to give women a platform to connect and help each other by sharing advice and knowledge. Download the app to join the conversation and meet the rest of the community.