Born and raised in Penang, Shannen Goh fondly recalls spending time outdoors and playing sports in her early schooling years. Active, outgoing and adventurous—she has always taken on life with a can-do attitude and believed that a person’s capabilities transcend gender roles and stereotypes.
Her passionate beliefs and determination carry into her new role as a department manager in Penang’s up-and-coming Disaggregation Manufacturing Operation (DMO) expansion. We recently spoke with her about her Intel journey so far and this exciting new chapter she’s embarked upon.
An engineer without borders
Shannen’s foray into the world of engineering began in the U.S., where she majored in chemical engineering. She followed that with a master’s degree in science at the National University of Singapore. On what led her into the technology field, Shannen shares, “Chemistry has always been my strong suit. When the time came to decide, it was a pretty straightforward decision. I knew it would be a tough subject, but I was also wanting to take on a challenge.”
Her first step into the world of wafer fabrication was in Singapore as a process engineer. She has since taken on a host of other roles and travelled across continents—a journey which included a three-year relocation to the U.S. She joined Intel Malaysia this past June.
In her new role, Shannen will be managing a team of 25 in Thin Film areas —a number that will increase when high-volume production commences. “As you may well know, the DMO is a huge undertaking. We’re basically building a brand new fab and transferring technology from New Mexico and Oregon. It’s going to be the first 12-inch fab in Malaysia, which is an extremely exciting and attractive prospect.”
At the epicenter of an exciting new chapter
With the DMO being a greenfield startup, Shannen is relishing the challenge of largely starting from the ground up: having little to no reference points and making decisions based on experience to move things forward. And having been rooted at her previous company for a long time, she acknowledges the learning curve is steep.
Nonetheless, she hit the ground running, outlining three main areas of focus to begin with: safety, people and equipment. “Firstly, ensuring the safety of everyone involved. Secondly, hiring competent engineers and technicians. Thirdly, strategically planning to ensure smooth & safe start up to support ramp,” she explains.
Passion and fearlessness matters
Shannen largely credits her successes to having a genuine interest and zest in her work. It’s her not-so-secret recipe to everything she takes on in life.
“I believe that passion is important. It’s hard to truly be successful at something if you don’t enjoy it. As an engineer, I’m here to solve problems and innovate—and sometimes the nights can be long. But this is exactly what gives me satisfaction and that sense of achievement: the opportunity to break through obstacles.”
As a woman in a still largely men-dominated industry, Shannen has this advice for her fellow women colleagues.
“Ladies, whether you’re a technician, engineer or a manager—be fearless. People are often concerned that an organization is too big and there’s too much to learn. But I believe courage is needed for change. And stepping out of one’s comfort zone often leads to growth. It also helps to put yourself in an environment that empowers you, and I can say that Intel is definitely one such place.”
Interested in learning more about job opportunities within Intel Malaysia? Explore opportunities here: https://jobs.intel.com/search-jobs/DMO/Malaysia/599/1/2/1733045/2x5/112x5/50/2
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