Francesca Dobbie

MEET FRANCESCA (COCO)

EOS, Electro Optic Systems, Defence and Space Technology Company
  • 2021 inaugural recipient of EOS Scholarships for future excellence in STEM
  • Awarded scholarship funding of $4,000
  • Year 11 student, Merewether High

What’s your favourite subject?

Science: chemistry and physics.

What are your goals within STEM?

My ultimate goal is to become an astronaut and work with various space agencies but before this I plan on going to university and completing a degree or more in a STEM field, most likely space science, astrophysics or engineering.

How is EOS’ scholarship going to help you achieve your goals?

I have always known what my goals are, but up until the past year or two, I had no idea of how to start actually achieving them. Going to Space Camp and starting to work with One Giant Leap truly started me off in the right direction, and this scholarship will push me even further in taking the steps I need to become an astronaut.

How do you plan on using your scholarship funds?

The scholarship will allow me to further develop the skills that I will require to become an astronaut – Master SCUBA Diver’s Accreditation and flying lessons. I would also use some funds to come to Canberra and meet the team at EOS and open my network up for future internships or work experience there.

What led you to where you are today?

The biggest thing that has led me to where I am today is my passion for what I am interested in. Without this, I never would have found Space Camp, and started this incredible journey into my future. The people around me, my family, Jackie and Bob from One Giant Leap, and many others have encouraged me to pursue my dreams, no matter what. To me, this was the most important thing as they gave me the courage to follow through with my passions and bring me to where and who I am today.

Who do you admire and why?

There are a great many people I look up to, however, chief among them would have to be astronaut Christina Koch. She is an incredible woman with so many achievements and such a fun personality. She has inspired me to work for what I love and follow my dreams. Christina has travelled the world, something I would love to do, and had some amazing experiences. Listening to her talk, I can see similarities between her reasons for wanting to travel the stars, and mine. She is fun and determined and has made it to where she wants to be in her life. She is a woman that I aspire to be like.

How important is STEM education?

To me, a STEM education is incredibly important. STEM is the way of the future, and it is the path to achieving so many great things for the world. STEM is the way to future space travel, adventure, exploration, protecting our planet and advancing our lives here on Earth. Without these things, we cannot go any further as a civilisation. Understandably, not everyone wishes to pursue a career in this field. This is totally okay, but it is still incredibly important to educate everyone about what STEM and the people in STEM can do for us, and the ways in which they improve our world.

What would be your advice for the next generation of women in STEM?

My advice for the next generation of women in STEM would be to just do it. It’s only recently I’ve realised that I can, in fact, do anything I set my mind to as long as I am prepared and determined. I think everyone should think like this and for the next generation, go for everything you can. Take as many chances and opportunities and don’t limit yourself because of what you think you are capable of, or what someone else has told you. No one except you determines what your life is going to be and how you are going to live it. This is your life, and you shape it however you see fit, because when you put your mind to it, absolutely anything is possible.

How do you think that companies like EOS can really inspire young women like yourself to successfully pursue and achieve their STEM careers?

I have always looked up to women in STEM. Even since I was little, I could notice that women weren’t typically cast as engineers, or astronauts, or scientists in movies and TV. Women have always been interested in STEM, but never really had the full facilities to follow this interest through. Companies like EOS can inspire young women to pursue STEM simply by making it accessible for everyone, promoting the inspiring women already in the field and showing that there is the opportunity for young girls to achieve their dream careers simply by pushing for them. STEM should be for everyone, and most importantly, for those who enjoy it.

We often hear people talk about having a “successful career in STEM”. What does this phrase mean to you?

Having a successful career in STEM for me personally means being happy with where I am and what I have achieved. It means completing my planned education and working a job that is either a stepping stone to my ultimate goal or a place I enjoy being and am always learning.

Where do you hope to see yourself in 10 years’ time?

In ten years’ time I will be 26. I hope to have completed a degree at university in space sciences and be working my way into the space industry. I hope to study at the ISU (International Space University) in France so in 10 years I hope to either be there or have already been. I see myself continuing on with my passions, such as SCUBA diving and learning to fly, as well as building up relationships in the STEM space industry.

Contact Electro Optic Systems for more information