Women in STEM: Five Timken Global Scholars Making an Impact

Each generation of problem solvers build on the knowledge of those who came before them — and make their own contributions to technical discoveries and improved lives.

John Timken at a podium speaking to Timken Global Scholars.

The Timken Global Scholars program improves lives, too. Since 1958, the program has awarded more than $26 million in scholarships to the children of Timken employees. Many pursue careers that advance technology and pave the way for greater diversity in STEM-related fields. Meet five past, present and future female scholars focused on doing work that matters for a more efficient, safe and sustainable world.

Material Characterization for More Efficient Machines

Jill Myers.

Jill Myers
Group Leader – Material Characterization
The Timken Company

Timken Global Scholar Class of 1984
Case Western Reserve University, Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering

“The best part of my job is the diversity of the testing we do. Timken R&D is a world-class facility on par with many of the world’s universities, with custom equipment that can’t be found anywhere else.”

Jill Myers always loved math. She credits the encouragement of her family and high school guidance counselor for her pursuit of a mechanical engineering degree in the mid-1980s. Her father, a Timken machinist, suggested she apply for a Timken scholarship.

Forty years later, Myers is group leader of material characterization at Timken, where she supervises work across multiple research and development (R&D) labs. Her team studies the physical characteristics of various materials used to manufacture bearings, and advances the company’s work in tribology, which informs industry standards on proper bearing lubrication. Myers’ work also impacts how Timken® bearings are heat treated to optimize efficiency in both bearing performance and the manufacturing process.

“We’re involved in just about every Timken innovation,” she says. “We’ll test bearing lubricants for food and beverage production, and may simultaneously test a new steel chemistry for next-generation wind energy bearings. Our work is very diverse.”

Safe Missions at Sea

Laura Damato.

Laura Damato
Lead Nuclear Mechanical Engineer
Portsmouth Naval Shipyard

Timken Global Scholar Class of 2011
University of New Hampshire, Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering

“Our work at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard must be 4.0 in order to ensure the submarines, and all components inside them, are operating properly to keep the sailors safe as they complete their mission.”

Growing up, Laura Damato was inspired by the work of her father, Timken Application Engineering Specialist Frank Damato.

“I thought it was so cool my dad was an engineer whose job was crucial to the function of so many important machines and tools,” she said. “Being a Timken Global Scholar helped me pursue an engineering degree and follow in his footsteps with a career that helps people by combining technical knowledge and creativity to solve problems.”

The most mission-critical part of Damato’s job is completing the repairs and overhaul of U.S. Navy nuclear-powered submarines in a safe and technically sound manner so they can play their part in national defense. That means responding with urgency when components require repair and providing the appropriate technical resolution and technical reviews.

When it comes to championing more diversity in STEM careers, Damato says it’s important for young women to know “they’re as smart and capable as anyone else.”

“Women can bring a different perspective and ask good questions to get to the right solution,” she said. “All of the men and women I’ve worked with have been very inclusive and helpful.”

Quality Medications for Successful Healthcare

Izabela Mateescu.

Izabela Mateescu
Analytical Chemist
Sterling Pharma Solutions

Timken Global Scholar Class of 2014
University of Sunderland, Master’s Degree in Pharmaceutical and Biopharmaceutical Formulations
Politechnica University, Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering

“My work contributes to the discovery, testing and commercialization of new pharmaceutical therapies. I investigate active ingredients and make sure they are produced correctly so they remain stable.”

While they work in very different industries, Izabela Mateescu and her father, Liviu, both share a passion for quality. Her work ensures quality in drug therapies; his work as a quality inspector at the Timken manufacturing facility in Ploiesti, Romania, ensures high-performance large-bore bearings for many industrial market customers.

“Being a Timken Global Scholar played a huge role in me pursuing higher education and moving from Romania to the UK,” Mateescu said. “I was able to finance studying abroad for my master’s degree and it enhanced my ambition to contribute to people’s lives.”

For instance, Mateescu recently tested a component for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases. The objective: deliver a stable active ingredient for an oral pharmaceutical product that improves the health of patients worldwide.

“The world needs both women and men working together to deliver safer technologies. I hope today’s parents are encouraging their daughters to join engineering-, science-, and information technology-based fields — because their perspectives are essential. My advice to others pursuing STEM careers is that this is your world. Shape it, or someone else will.”

More Green Energy Sources

Marjolein van Gils.

Marjolein van Gils
University Student

Timken Global Scholar Class of 2024
Pursuing a degree in electrical engineering at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands

“I want to inspire and change industry for the better. The issues in the world right now concern my generation greatly and I think we are the ones who will have to make a change.”

When Marjolein van Gils was 14, a school advisor suggested that a technical career would be too difficult for her. With the support of her father Jack van Gils, a business intelligence analyst, and her brother, who are both engineers, she chose to pursue it anyway.

Today, van Gils studies electrical engineering with a specialization in automotive technology. Her ultimate goal is to specialize in power electronics and develop new green energy sources that make the world a greener, cleaner place. Next academic year, she plans to join a student team that will build a sustainable car to gain practical experience in sustainable engineering.

Van Gils also mentors others considering a STEM education, often sharing her experiences with other young women who visit the Eindhoven campus and tutoring for younger students in the engineering program.

“I love my major because the more I learn about physics and other technical concepts, the more a new world seems to open up to me,” she said. “This scientific world is behind almost everything we have accomplished as human beings.”

Engineering a Healthier, More Sustainable World

Sarah Warren.

Sarah Warren
High School Senior

Timken Global Scholar Class of 2024
Plans to major in chemical engineering at an accredited state university later this year

“Planned obsolescence is the opposite of what I want in a product. I have a deep appreciation for our Earth, and I want to minimize waste as much as possible. I am interested in creating sustainable products that will last a lifetime.”

Sarah Warren, daughter of senior product development specialist Scott Warren, has had the same backpack since the fourth grade. She appreciates its durability and considers it inspiration for developing products with long life cycles. Her ideal career is one where she can positively impact the health of people, the environment, or both.

“With pharmaceuticals, I could help make manufacturing more cost efficient and give people broader access to more affordable therapies,” she said. “I’m also interested in making product manufacturing processes more sustainable. In college, I hope to discover which path I’m drawn to in order to make our world cleaner or more efficient.”

Warren said she is “deeply grateful” to Timken for providing scholarships that help the children of Timken employees pursue post-secondary education. She’s also eager to pursue engineering like both of her parents, who first met when they were engineers at Motorola. She plans to attend the University of Minnesota in the fall.

“My mother showed me women can excel as engineers and passed on her affinity for science and math to me, Warren said. “It’s why I have chosen to pursue a STEM career.”

The Timken scholarship program is an employee benefit that helps advance careers, communities and innovation. Learn more about the company’s additional investments that make Timken a great place to work, like learning and development and technically-enabled ergonomic safety programs.