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Introducing the next generation of women engineers

This Women in Engineering Day, J.D. Irving, Limited is celebrating the next generation of women engineers entering the field across its operations.

Meaghan Flinn, a Process Engineer at Irving Wallboard, has recently joined the company full-time after being hired before graduation. While a chemical engineering student at the University of New Brunswick Fredericton (UNB), Flinn worked as a student for Irving Wallboard, first in a maintenance role in 2021 before transitioning into an engineering role.

Flinn said her roles as a student allowed her to apply what she was learning in the classroom to real-world scenarios. It also provided an opportunity to see women engineers in leadership roles.

For Flinn, Women in Engineering Day brings more visibility to women in the field.

“It’s amazing to see what everyone is achieving,” she said.

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Julia Lloyd is a Project and Facilities Engineering Student, also with Irving Wallboard, now in her fourth summer with the company.

The fifth-year mechanical engineering student at UNB said she was drawn to the problem-solving aspect of the field.

Through her student role with the company, Lloyd said she learned the importance of working with other women and encouraging each other in a male-dominated field.

“Don’t be scared to get out there,” Lloyd said of the advice she’d offer other women and girls interested in pursuing engineering.

“I would also say don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty and get the hands-on experience. It is beneficial in so many ways.”


Isabella Uzcategui, a Paper Mill Engineering Co-op Student at Irving Tissue in Macon, GA, said she draws inspiration from the all-women team of paper engineers at her workplace.

"That is not something you see often in this field," said Uzcategui, who decided to pursue engineering because she enjoys problem solving and fast-paced work environments. "My position this summer is helping me to learn as much as possible."

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Madeline Thibodeau is a civil engineering student at the Irving Pulp & Paper mill in Saint John, NB this summer and is in her second work term.

“What excites me about the future is that the field is constantly changing and evolving,” the third year UNB student said. “I can only imagine what I will get to learn and see by the end of my career.”

Thibodeau said she’s been inspired by two strong female mentors during her work terms with the company.

“They have given me guidance and excitement about entering the engineering field,” she said.

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Abigail Cramm is now an associate engineer at Harbour Development after completing two co-op terms with NBM Railways. A fresh alumna of Memorial University, she was also hired before graduation. She’s looking forward to owning her own projects in her new role as she continues to work toward her Professional Engineer certification. 

“Having role models throughout my work terms really encouraged and inspired me,” Cramm said. “Many of my supervisors and mentors have been women, and this made a huge difference. Being able to picture myself in the role inspired me to work hard to make the dream a reality.”

International Women in Engineering Day is celebrated around the world each year on June 23.