Jane Tink, P.Eng.: Celebrating diversity for a brighter tomorrow
In 1984, the first Macintosh computer was sold by Apple and the Space Shuttle Discovery made its maiden voyage. Progress was being made at Alberta engineering schools, too.
That year, Jane Tink, P.Eng., was one of a handful of women engineering students to graduate from the University of Calgary. Over the following decades, she’s watched and celebrated as more women – slowly but surely – join the province’s engineering ranks.
“I think engineering holds the key to our adaptation and continuing to survive in this world, and as we look at solutions we will attract more women. We will attract the best and the brightest, because society is now putting a value on that,” says Tink, who represents APEGA on the Engineers Canada board and served as APEGA’s 98th president in 2017.
Jane Tink, P.Eng. speaking at the APEGA 2017 Annual General Meeting.
Today, close to 20 per cent of engineering graduates in Alberta are women. And Engineers Canada’s 30 by 30 initiative aims to raise the percentage of newly licensed women engineers to 30 per cent by the year 2030.
“As a society and as a profession, we need to encourage diversification in our views and we need to incorporate those viewpoints as we move forward,” says Tink.
As engineers and geoscientists, she adds, “we have the ability to do immense good and we have been doing it for over 100 years. We will continue to do it, as long as we support each other – because by the very nature of the profession we are problem solvers.”
Tink knows a few things about problem solving herself. A civil engineer, she worked over 30 years in the oil and gas industry. In 2013, she started her own firm, Consult Tink Inc., which serves clients around the world.
She also runs a ranch south of Okotoks and has been an active APEGA volunteer since the early 1980s. One of the highlights of her volunteer work has been mentoring and encouraging students – both men and women – to explore careers in engineering and geoscience.
“I was raised to believe that we each have the power to create change. It is our choice. We can sit on the sidelines and complain or get involved and make the world a better place.”