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Profiles of Women of EPA: Noha Gaber
Noha Gaber, Special Assistant to the EPA Administrator
Office of the Administrator
Where were you born?
Cairo, Egypt. I was raised and educated in the United States and the United Kingdom.
What brought you to EPA?
I was attracted to the environmental field from a very young age. I have always enjoyed being outside. As I grew up, I became concerned about the relationship between people and the environment: how human activities affect the environment and how a polluted and degraded environment affects the welfare of people. I was particularly interested in applying my technical knowledge in environmental engineering and sustainable development to support the development of a robust environmental policy. EPA was a perfect fit for me!
What type of work do you do at EPA?
I focus on connecting EPA employees to compelling work, to one another, and to EPA's important mission. To do that, I'm leading three strategic initiatives:
- The Skills Marketplace program: a program that gives employees an opportunity to provide their expertise part-time on projects in other offices across EPA, as well as gain valuable professional development experience. For example, through this program, an employee from one of our regional offices who normally works on local and regional water quality issues was able to put her background in climate science to work by participating in a national level workgroup to develop a climate adaption plan;
- An enterprise collaboration platform: an organized, powerful platform for teams, organizations and communities to share information, collaborate and enhance knowledge transfer across the Agency using technology;
- GreenSpark: A program that encourages our employees to offer fresh perspectives and innovative ideas from anywhere in EPA to take on common challenges
I've always believed that EPA's most important assets are its employees. By giving them the right tools to work better together, great work is produced at the agency.
What is your highest level of education? What was your major?
Ph.D. in environmental engineering.
What message would you like to send other women who are considering college or a career in environmental protection?
A career in environmental protection is challenging, yet incredibly rewarding. Environmental protection is no longer solely focused on treating pollution. Now it requires a more holistic approach to address complex challenges like climate change. I highly recommend that you start with a strong technical foundation in environmental sciences. Build upon that knowledge by learning more about legal issues and social sciences, such as economics. Develop your transferable skills, like communications and analytical skills. Since advancing environmental protection is a team effort, you should also become adept in collaboration and team-building.