Champion For Industry Award

Meet Vanessa Li, our Q2 2020 Winner

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Vanessa Li

Technical Manager, Novelis

Despite having limited exposure to STEM at a young age and being told by her professors that she wouldn't be a good fit for a career in engineering, Li has established herself as an engineering force to be reckoned with as a metallurgical specialist and technical manager. She has made it her personal professional mission to encourage students - especially young girls - to pursue careers in STEM and supports them in their efforts.

Advocating for the Future of Women in STEM, Vanessa Li Wins Champion for Industry


As part of Li's initiative to give STEM careers more exposure, she believes one of the most important aspects of the movement is getting kids involved in STEM at a young age, which starts with recruiting parents to get involved. In doing so, she's not only helping to change the future of industry, but she's also educating current professionals and dispelling negative industry stereotypes.

"I think it's very important [to educate] young kids, but parents don't have to know a whole lot about STEM. Just don't discourage [your kids]," she says. "You don't have to have a STEM degree to be in the STEM field. But I think it's good to let them see there are a lot of different paths they can choose. The more exposure they see, the easier it will be for them to pick what they want to do."

Read the full article here.


Champions For Industry drive their teams, their companies, and the manufacturing industry itself forward. If you know a Champion, let us get to know them too.

Questions? Contact Mikaela Tierney, Executive Editor, at