Isabelle Marcil - Senior Scientist, Space Exploration

Isabelle Marcil

What is unique about your job?
There's always something new to be learned, and I get the opportunity to work with great Canadian scientists.

Which professional accomplishment are you the most proud of?
I made my way as a woman in a typically male environment, and as a scientist in social/human sciences in an environment where "hard" sciences prevail.

Who or what helped you the most throughout your career?
The question of a teacher that changed my career path: "Have you considered research?" That was a turning point.

What advice would you offer to girls or women?
Be perseverant and flexible. There are many paths to a satisfying career, so be proactive and have a plan A, B, C… but be ready to seize whatever unforeseen opportunities life may bring, which may become your plan D or E. To quote Louis Pasteur: "Chance favours the prepared mind."

How do / did you reconcile work commitments and your family life?
Everyone has to find what works for them. You have to be flexible and adaptable. Life teaches us that there is no perfect solution and that sooner or later, we have to make compromises. I have made professional choices in order to maintain a family and social network where I can reach out for help. For me, that is an essential part in maintaining a balance between work and family.

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