Sofia Dorofeeva is Russia’s first woman to earn a diploma as a train conductor. She graduated magna cum laude from Moscow’s College of Railway and Urban Transport earlier this summer.
“My parents did not want me to study a ‘masculine’ profession, but I stood my ground and have never regretted my choice,” Dorofeeva says.
She went to art school before enrolling on the train conducting course. Her anime-style drawings often included trains, which got her interested in the mechanics of railway transport even before she applied for the course. In her illustrations, Dorofeeva depicts herself as a train conductor.
Dorofeeva will do an internship in autumn, and work as an assistant conductor in Lobnya, in the Moscow oblast, from January next year. This has been made possible due to a change in Russian legislation, which will allow women to become electric and high-speed train conductors, truck and tractor drivers, boatswains, parachutists, and sailors from 1 January 2021, professions which until now have been deemed “dangerous” and thus legally offered to men only. The list of such professions has shrunk from 456 to 98, with the updated list permitting only men to work in metalworking, well drilling, oil and gas production, and mining.