Marina Deletic’s journey into STEM includes Artificial Intelligence (AI), baking and a whole lot of engineering
What does baking, engineering and ballet all have in common? Marina Deletic, that’s what. Marina is a customer engineer at Google and lover of AI and baking. Engineering was the chosen career for her mother, father and three grandparents, so with all that engineering in her DNA it’s no surprise Marina followed in her grandmother’s footsteps to study chemical engineering at uni. Perhaps what is unexpected, is that she also trained in ballet pre-professionally until that point.
Getting into STEM
Drawn to the fast-paced change of technology, Marina switched to studying data and software engineering. She graduated from Monash University in Melbourne with a dual degree – Bachelor of Chemical Engineering (Honours) and a Bachelor of Commerce. The biggest hurdle in her journey? Deciding where to go next.
“Studying STEM gives you so many options and opportunities for the future,” Marina says. “You can end up doing so many different things because studying STEM teaches you how to think in a way that is transferable to so many different disciplines.”
After uni, Marina found herself at Forever New. No, she wasn’t shopping for the newest fashion trends, but working as a customer insight analyst, helping the business to better understand their customers. She is also the co-founder of EdHour, a non-profit organisation that provides financial support to students in Victoria who can’t afford educational assistance.
Baking a future
Marina is currently working at Google as a customer engineer, specialising in data, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning. Marina helps Google’s customers create technical solutions for their business goals. These solutions include creating architecture, demonstrations and POCs (proof of concepts) – an experiment that tests if an idea can work in the real world.
Wondering where her passion for baking comes in? Combining AI and tasty treats to create new recipes. The Girls Day Out in STEM Bake Off highlights the machine learning used by Marina and her co-worker Natalie Piucco and has already produced a cakie (50% cookie and 50% cake) as well as a breakie (50% bread and 50% cookie).
Marina had no shortage of examples of engineers in her life. “I was so lucky to grow up in a family with so many role models leading the way in advocating for women in STEM,” she says.
Diversity leads to new ways of doing things and new innovations. When people have a narrow view of the world and experiences, the product won’t serve a variety of different uses, she explains. “Diversity is imperative to create better, more inclusive products that serve the whole population.”
Marina’s study and career pathway
- Bachelor of Chemical Engineering (Honours) / Bachelor of Commerce, Monash University
- Co-founder of non-profit, EdHour
- Customer Insight Analyst, Forever New
- Summer Intern, Google
- Customer Engineer, Google