Tanyaradzwa Mangoma

PhD Candidate, University of Cambridge


You don’t have to be the smartest. STEM is for everyone.

What do you do?

I work on Additive Manufacturing (commonly known as 3D printing) of neuromorphic and neural networks devices (i.e electronic hardware components that work like the brain).

Why did you choose this field?

I didn’t know anything about the field. Neither Additive manufacturing nor neuromorphics. I didn’t know much about regular computing theory or electronics. I had blanket funding for a PhD of any sorts so I decided to do the thing I knew the least about and the thing that involved as many interdisciplinary fields as I could name; that way I would actually learn new things throughout my PhD; and I have.

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

Being an engineer; an inventor. I only saw those things in the movies, never thought it could be me.

Why do you love working in STEM?

I like physics. I never got officially trained in it but I absolutely adore the field. Being in STEM esp experimental engineering I get to witness physics in my hands. I get to read work from legends and be fascinated with it. Then play with it. It’s fun.

When I wake up I’m mostly fascinated to troubleshoot a problem. Because I have to go back and read all the work all the great people before me have done and try and figure out why my stuff doesn’t work. It’s such a buzz!

Best advice for next generation?

You don’t have to be the smartest. STEM is for everyone.

Inspo quote / fun fact / role model

‘The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.’- not sure who said it

NOMINATE a woman in STEM

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