Women in Science Profiles
Dr. Rebeka Rudolf
At present I work as a Senior Researcher at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, member of the University of Maribor. At the same time I head the Research group which was established by the company Zlatarna Celje.
Within the scope of my activities at the Institute for Material Technology I am doing research on different materials. This means that I study microstructures and test materials as well as technologies for producing and processing materials.
At the company Zlatarna Celje I head the Research group and the development activities. Our work is focused on technological production modernisation and on the adoption of new technologies in the production of different articles made of noble metals (this includes the production of jewellery and dental alloys, gilding and silvering of different objects, gold refinement, finishing of products made of gold and silver and the production of metallic strips). In recent years I have actively headed and co-ordinated several industrial and applicable projects for different Slovenian companies and I have also participated in several international projects.
Together with Alojz Križman and Bojan Albreht I am the holder of the patent "Processing technology of Silver Strips" (official notification of patent issuing SI 21916 A, date of publication 30 June 2006, patent application no. P-200400343, application date 17 December 2004, Ljubljana: The Slovenian Intellectual Property Office).
I entered the world of science by coincidence. After I had finished my BSc degree at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Prof. Alojz Križman, PhD, who was at that time the rector of the University of Maribor, invited me to work as a researcher at the Institute for Material Technology at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering. In 1997 I successfully defended my MSc thesis entitled Research on Influential Parameters in Relation to the Microstructure of the AlSi7-SiC Composite Produced by Thi Casting. Four years later, in 2002, I received a PhD degree which I had finished with the thesis Internal Oxidation of the Discontinuous Composites from Cu-C System. For my PhD thesis I was awarded the scientific prize The Best PhD Thesis in Pomurje.
Whenever I reflect on the role of women in science, I come to the conclusion that constant studying is a unique way of life. This means that in crucial moments a woman as a scientist must completely concentrate on her work and eliminate disturbing factors which are in most cases represented by family life and motherhood. Of course, doing this is not always easy, especially when your partner wants to pursue a career in science as well. One constantly needs to agree to compromises and to adjust to different situations. I can say from my own experience that this requires great effort and preparedness to give some things up. This is why I hope that in Slovenia and wider Europe the opinion about women scientists will change and that consequently they will be held in higher esteem.