From Zagreb to Girona for Love… of Chemistry

Barbara Topolovec (ESR5)

Hi, I’m Barbara and I was born in Zagreb, beautiful capital in the continental part of Croatia. I am 29 years old and a chemical engineer. On the NOWELTIES page, you can find me as ESR 5.

I think it all started in high school, where I met my first love: chemistry. Chemistry taught me that any complex structure can be known if broken down into many small parts. So, I thought that this theory could apply to all life’s problems and environmental challenges. Even if I come from a small European country, I always felt I had to think big so that, as a European citizen, I could give concrete help to the development of society. For this reason, I chose the engineering faculty, which gave me an entire “ocean” of knowledge from different branches of chemistry and engineering. I must admit that during my studies I had the opportunity to define my ideas on what really interested me, and I found my purpose: to improve the lives of others by purifying water. I still remember my graduation day, when I was happy with the cap on my head, convinced that it would only be the beginning of my career and my personal development.

And now I am here to write the beginning of a challenging and exciting journey. As a woman I feel that I have a double responsibility: the one as a researcher and the one as a woman. Yes, because I would like to be an example for all those girls who are afraid of launching themselves into the world of science. One of my wishes is that a large community of scientists can be created, ready to contribute actively so that even women can become points of reference in the field of scientific research.