I discovered this very rewarding science at high-school, during lab classes. You could feel, touch, and see. Colours change, odours are created. It was great, like playing the sorcerer’s apprentice.
After that, my choice was very clear: enrolling in an integrated preparatory class to learn as much chemistry as possible. Not the general preparatory classes: their spirit was too competitive for me. I thus joined a chemistry school preparing for an engineering diploma over 5 years: the ESCOM.
From the start, you are given the taste of all directions chemistry has to offer, which allows you to choose knowingly. On top of that, internships and the possibility of taking a gap year: a one-year contract in a company abroad, while being a student of ESCOM. I could thus spend one year in the USA with Dupont de Nemours in Research and Development, working on “fluorinated surfactants for solvent fire extinguishing foams”… A very specific, but exciting subject! This internship has been an enriching experience for me, because I had to be completely autonomous. I learned to know myself better, and I discovered that I needed more interaction with others.
For the last year, I chose the option “Industrial management and marketing” with the goal of achieving a double skill. My graduation internship was with Clarins. A world of glitter and dreams which were not mine. I thus headed in the opposite direction for my engineering career. Learning about reality through these internships helped me a lot in shaping my professional project.
I have a job with 3M France, as technical support engineer for industrial glues and adhesives. Maybe you do not realise it, but there are adhesives everywhere! Shower doors, road signs, household appliances, trains, and even in clothes and planes!
The richness of applications, of products, and of contacts, make my mission extremely varied. I help the customer, identifying the most suitable product from our range. I am involved in lab tests for measuring the assembly performance, and then I assist the customer in implementing the selected glue or tape. I sometimes work with the marketing team for launching new products. My job is at the cross-roads of various departments such as marketing, purchasing, research and development, etc.
The creative, concrete and amusing side of chemistry guided my first steps. Why not become a well-known chemist? My curriculum at ESCOM allowed me to be a chemist in a different way. It is what I discovered through engineering education. Chemistry is not limited to research alone, there are many and sometimes unimagined possibilities. Today, I get great pleasure from my job as a technical support engineer. The human relations side, the ties with many departments, the scientific aspect, the international character of my company, all these elements are an everyday source of richness. I have only one desire: to continue to learn and to take responsibility for new projects.