Female seafarer works non-stop for six months
Her job not only requires her to work 10 hours daily in a 40 deg C room, but also live away from home for six consecutive months.
Miss Tan Huixian, 24, finds herself the only female seafarer on most ships too, but her job is a "childhood dream come true".
The 4th engineer at home-grown shipping line Pacific International Lines told The New Paper: "I have always loved hands-on work since I was young, and I excelled in physics and maths."
Miss Tan, who graduated with a diploma in marine engineering from Singapore Polytechnic, works seven days a week for six months straight. She then gets two months' rest.
Her day-to-day tasks include operating machinery such as oil purifiers and freshwater generators, cleaning machinery and inspecting them in the engine room.
While she has not encountered any major accidents, she had some near misses.
"It is quite dangerous to be working in the room because there are a lot of pipelines that contain oil above 140 deg C and electrical cables everywhere.
"There was once when my colleague accidentally let go of something heavy, and it swung downwards, nearly hitting me. But I managed to move aside in time." But Miss Tan has not been as lucky when it comes to personal attacks from a few male colleagues.
"I have met male colleagues who launched personal attacks or tended to be more judgmental towards female seafarers, and I try to deal with them by making sure I do my job well," she said.
Miss Tan spends her downtime like any other young person - she scrolls through social media and plays games on the PlayStation 4 she brings along.
During her breaks, she travels, plays drums and watches Korean dramas and anime.
Her job has brought her to places such as India, China and South Africa. Her favourite pit stop is Wellington, New Zealand.
While Miss Tan agreed that women have the potential to go far and break new grounds in engineering and other Stem industries, she cautioned that her job is not for everyone.
She said: "There are a lot of cons in terms of the physical, mental and emotional aspects, even more so for girls. But if one can overcome those, then this is an extremely rewarding career."
Women who are inspired by Miss Tan's story can get involved via the Maritime Connect Office, a central node connecting maritime employers, industry associations and the Government to students and jobseekers.