Professor Weijia Yuan received his Bachelor degree from Tsinghua University, and his PhD from the University of Cambridge. Weijia joined the University of Bath as a lecturer/assistant professor and was promoted to reader/associate professor. He joined the University of Strathclyde as a professor in 2018.
He leads a research team in the area of applied superconductivity, including energy storage, fault current limiters, machines and power transmission lines and often works with industry partners. Weijia is a Research Fellow of the Academy.
“I decided to choose electrical engineering as I thought this might led me to a more practical job (maybe with a higher salary!).”
How would you describe your current role to someone who knows nothing about engineering?
I educate and train the next generation of engineers, and lead a research team of over 10 people to advance clean energy technologies.
Why did you choose to go into engineering?
I was good at maths and physics. I was choosing between maths and electrical engineering before I entered university. Finally, I decided to choose electrical engineering as I thought this might lead me to a more practical job (maybe with a higher salary!).
What do you like most about being an engineer?
Opportunities to make devices for real-world applications and have an impact in everyday life.
Tell us about an achievement that you are most proud of.
Having successfully trained and graduated a number of PhD students who are now all working in engineering and have good jobs that they like.
How do you think racial parity in engineering can be achieved?
Encourage more BAME students to choose engineering in their undergraduate study and encourage more BAME students to choose maths or physics for their A-level studies.
Has being a BAME engineer had an impact on your career either positive or negative?
I don’t think there is any particular impact. At the end of the day, your performance and ability to deliver your job tasks matters most.
How has the ethnic diversity of the profession changed since you started working in engineering?
I think there is a significant change as now I see more and more colleagues with BAME backgrounds. But I still hope there can be more.
What would you say to someone considering a career in engineering?
It’s an exciting career. You have the opportunity to realise your full potential here.