24 Year Old Female Car Designer | The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation

24 Year Old Female Car Designer | The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation

– Typically, when you think
of motorhead car designers, you think of tatted arms, greasy T-shirts, tinkering in a garage, bulky guys. Well, I hate to burst that bubble, but at least one of the auto industry’s most prolific car designers of today is actually very new at driving, and she’s neither bulky nor a guy. Here’s Alie Ward to explain. – Victoria Schein is an anomaly. As a wee toddler, and a triplet at that, she wanted a car, a real car. She was such an avid auto enthusiast that her parents bought her a subscription to an automobile magazine. But it was when Victoria
saw cars off the page and in the wild that she was hooked. – I was in the car with my mom, and I saw this really cool sports car. And, at the age of four,
I just wanted to know what that car was, I wanted
to know why it went so fast and how someone made that beautiful car. – By the age of about five, her tastes became well defined. – The first car I ever
wanted was a Bugatti, and it’s an expensive car,
so my parents bought me a Hot Wheels Bugatti
instead, and it’s on my desk. – On her desk at Ford Motor Company where she now works as
a research engineer. And she’s making her mark fast. In only a couple of years’ time
and with the help of mentors, Victoria has filed for 30 patents. Yes, at just 24 years old,
she has 30 patents pending. – To file patents meant a lot to me. It gave me a motivation
to come to work each day, to create solutions that
would help better the world and change the way that I
saw myself making an impact in my career and to
helping others around me. – I motored to the Motor City, where I met up with Victoria
in Dearborn, Michigan. Here, she’s part of a
program where she rotates through different departments
within the company. One thing Victoria proudly brings to the table is a novel perspective. For most of her life, she has been a passenger in a car, not a driver. And it’s informed her design innovations. – With my first rotation, we did
a lot with ideation sessions where we bring a large
group of people together to brainstorm new ideas. And some themes come
up where we are trying to address people with disabilities or elderly individuals or
low income or children. – So car design doesn’t just affect a buyer or a driver of a car. It also affects ride-share passengers and people who don’t have
access to actually drive a car. – Exactly. – So you’ve been obsessed
with cars for a long time. You’ve been designing them. But you just got your
driver’s license when? – About three days ago. – Three days ago? Did you even get it in the mail yet? – No, that’s why I’m still waiting for it to come in the mail. (laughing) – Even though the path to work in the automotive
industry was always clear, it was not always easy. And there were times when
Victoria questioned her ability to learn what she needed to
know to excel in this field. – I’m really glad that I stuck with it because I realized that grades did not dominate my self-worth. To me it’s not about grades. It’s about how you apply yourself and what makes you happy
in what you’re doing. And, for me, that’s innovation. – Gaining perspective from the past and designing the future.

About the Author: Michael Flood


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