Next article :
LinkedIn: Why Your Likes, Comments, and Shares Can CHANGE Everything?
  • Imprimer

Hi Biova, thanks to the grant you've won, you'll be provided with support by Bouygues Travaux Publics for the next 3 years. Can you tell us more about yourself and your career path?

Biova: Hello! My name's Biova, I'm 21 and I'm in my first year at Centrale Supélec on the Paris-Saclay campus. I grew up in Epinal, in the Vosges, where the piano was a big part of my childhood. These days, I like to get way from things by doing sport, more specifically cheerleading, a discipline similar to 'Pom-Pom Girls' where gymnastics and dance are brought together. I'm also an active member of the 'Çapèse' association, an organisation that raises awareness about engineering studies among secondary school girls and fights against sexist and sexual violence on campus. We organise events in secondary schools and run prevention campaigns.

After finishing my baccalauréat, I entered an MPSI (Maths, Physics and Engineering Sciences) foundation class before going on to do PSI (Physics and Engineering Sciences). I was the only girl in my final year to do this! At the end of my foundation course, I chose to go to CentraleSupélec because of the wide range of courses on offer and the breadth of fields of application.

You are one of nine students to be awarded the "Sébastienne Guyot" scholarship, in recognition of your achievements. How did the selection process work? What will this scholarship mean for you in practical terms?

Biova: In September 2022, without really believing anything would come of it, I applied for the "Sébastienne Guyot" scholarship, an initiative of CentraleSupélec in partnership with the CentraleSupélec Foundation. Every year, this scholarship supports 9 young women in their engineering studies and is funded by partner companies to the tune of 8,000 euros per year for three years. My application was one of 16 shortlisted for the oral. I then found out that I was the winner at the award ceremony in December, and that Bouygues Travaux Publics had offered to sponsor me. It was a great surprise and a huge joy for me, because this scholarship opens up unexpected possibilities for my studies!

In particular, it will enable me to find out more about construction and civil engineering, and why not continue my studies abroad. I'm looking forward to broadening my knowledge and seeing from the inside how it all works to see if this is the path I want to take.

What expectations do you have of this special relationship with Bouygues Travaux Publics?

Biova: This scholarship is a gateway to construction sites and hands-on contact with the corporate world. I was lucky enough to share a special moment with my sponsor Bertrand Burtschell, the CEO of Bouygues Travaux Publics, who came from the same school as me and whom I would like to thank for his support. 

Bertrand told me about his career path, in France and abroad, and talked about the choices and opportunities that have brought him to where he is now.

He also shared with me his desire to shake things up, to get the younger generation on board and to promote the place of women within the company. Our exchange was very inspiring.

Opening up possibilities
Bouygues Travaux Publics' ambition is to enable women to fulfil their potential in all types of positions, and the nature of our projects requires technical knowledge. So, we need to attract women from technical backgrounds, but also attract more secondary school girls to this pathway. CentraleSupélec, which has a strong reputation for the quality of its programmes, has only 20% female graduates. Through the Sébastienne Guyot scholarship, CentraleSupélec and Bouygues Travaux Publics are encouraging female students with a scientific background to follow this career path.

The Eole construction site at Porte Maillot opened its doors to you on 21st June. Even though Bouygues Travaux Publics is carrying out a number of gender-balancing initiatives to increase the number of women in its teams, our construction sites are still predominantly male dominated. How did you feel in this environment?

Biova: I thought this site was incredible! I was amazed to see everything that goes on underground. It's certainly a very male-dominated environment, but the presence of Eleonora Riva, the project director who guided us throughout the visit, helped me feel more at ease and empowered. I admired her determination and, watching her, I told myself that anything is possible!

Eleonora presented the site to me from a fairly technical angle, which enabled me to grasp the challenges associated with the project and the constraints that the teams face on a daily basis. I realized that a project is never set in stone, and that there are challenges to be met throughout.

Eleonora also told me about her studies at Milan Polytechnic. By happy coincidence, I had identified this same school to pursue my training with a double degree in architecture: what fascinates me about construction is also the ability to design structures as beautiful as they are complex. A project that seemed out of my reach, but which I'm now close to achieving thanks to my scholarship and Eleonora.

Sébastienne Guyot, a remarkable engineer and resistance fighter
Sébastienne Guyot (1896 - 1941) was a French aerodynamics engineer, who graduated from the first women's class at the École Centrale de Paris. French cross-country champion, she also took part in the 1928 Amsterdam Summer Olympics over the 800-metre distance. She is also remembered for her involvement in the Resistance during the Second World War.

The scholarship bearing her name has been awarded every year to female students at Centrale and then CentraleSupélec to finance their studies since 2010.
  • Imprimer
Access all content :
Log in to view all articles, to comment, or customise your filters.
Log in
Read also :
Articles suivants
Special topic
Special topic
The Health & Safety strategy of Bouygues Travaux Publics
Special topic
Campus: where will our children learn tomorrow?
Special topic
Lean management is making its way onto Bouygues Construction work sites
Next topic :
All news