• Explore Membership
  • Student Services
  • Early Career Resources
  • Corporate Membership
  • SPIE Professional Magazine
Print PageEmail Page

Clementina Timus

Lead Physicist, National Institute for Lasers, Plasma and Radiation Physics, Romania (retired)
Country of birth: Romania

Educational background: PhD Physics, Institute for Atomic Physics, Romania

Clementina TimusWhat are the primary responsibilities of your current job?
Early in my career, I worked as a physicist in a factory that made fluorescent lamps. I was fascinated not only by the devices' working principles, but also by the steps in the technological flowchart. I was impressed by the quality of materials used in fabrication, the respect for each successive operation, the formation of the final product-everything had a specific contribution, nothing was left out.

As a member of the team responsible for the flow chart, it was an exciting to see the final product and realize that people would benefit from my own contributions. This was a valuable lesson for me and throughout my career, the feeling that my work is useful was stimulating and gave me a strong sense of responsibility.

What is the biggest challenge you have overcome in your career?
I can't say that all along my career I never felt discrimination, despite the statement of full equality between women and men-sometimes I hid my tears. When I was working among male colleagues, I respected them and was often respected and I never regretted it. Women never have to feel inferior, they have to be themselves and be proud to be women, because this is unique. In my opinion, man or woman, we have to keep our identity and never try to be different.

What do you wish you had known when first starting out?
I'm positive that role models are important for young people. I feel the main advantage of being a scientist is forever remaining a student. Scientific work involves constant study; starting something new and unknown; trying to understand, correlate, and conclude; never to being content, but always going deeper to find the essential of the phenomenon. For this, you need to be patient, hardworking, have a positive mind, and be passionately in love with your profession.