John Cena is a man of many surprises. Two years ago at Wrestlemania 33, he shocked his ex-fiancee Nikki Bella by proposing during a tag-team match. The next year at Wrestlemania 34, he participated in an unplanned bout with the Undertaker, who pinned him in under 3 minutes.
While he’s not on this year’s card, John Cena will compete in a yet to be revealed event, according to Dave Meltzer. He’s also surprising the world this week by going public with a new relationship.
The woman’s name is Shay Shariatzadeh, who was spotted arm in arm with Cena in Vancouver on March 27. Here’s what you need to know.
1. She’s 29 and Lives & Works in Vancouver
According to E! Daily Buzz, Shariatzadeh is 29 years old. When cross-referenced with her LinkedIn profile, this age makes sense. Going by the name Shay S, she lists a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the University of British Columbia. She self-reports that she attended the school from 2008 to 2013.
That would be a 12-year age difference between her and Cena. For comparison’s sake, Bella is 35.
Shariatzadeh works as a Product Manager for Avigilon, a security systems innovator. On her LinkedIn page, she says that she led the development of the “H4 Fisheye, H4 Mini Dome, H4 Thermal, H4 Pan Tilt Zoom cameras, H4 Video Intercom, SL Cameras, Lenses, System Design Tool and more!”
E! Daily Buzz lists her Net Worth at approximately $200,000.
2. She Has Always Enjoyed Math & Physics
In a profile done with Avigilon for International Women’s Day, she talked about her family’s history and how much she’s enjoyed engineering during her life.
I have always enjoyed math and physics. My brother studied engineering in school, and I remember one day he came home with a project and it was an autonomous car — and that was it! I decided to study Engineering. I was lucky to meet a mentor early on in my career who told me about Product Management, which was the perfect balance of technical, business and people skills for me. I interviewed multiple Product Managers to figure out how they got into their role, and I followed their path. Today, I take pride working in the video surveillance industry because our products help keep people and their assets safe, and that’s my little contribution to our world.
She has been working at the Vancouver-based company since May 2015. Before that, she worked for Alpha Technologies Ltd. and was an Engineering Peer Advisor at during her final year at UBC.
3. She Uses Her Mother as an Example for Hard Work in a Predominantly Male Field
Later in the interview with Avigilon, she credits her mother as “the strongest and most hardworking person” she knows.
The biggest lesson she taught me was to be independent and fight for the things I want in life. She is a surgeon who worked day and night so we could have a good life. While she was at the peak of her career, she gave it all up to move her family to Canada to give us a better future. She is the reason I fight to be the best version of myself, to be kind and to never give up — because, despite all the hardship, she always smiled. She is my hero.
According to Engineers Canada, women only make up 13% of all practicing licensed engineers. Due to women such as Shariatzadeh, that number is growing.
Over the past decade, the number of women in the engineering profession in Canada has steadily grown. Engineers Canada’s National Membership Report contains valuable data on the state of the engineering membership. This annual report has tracked an increase in the number of women who are practicing professional engineers from 12,740 in 2006, to 26,113 in 2016. Women now account for 12.8 percent of practicing professional engineers in Canada.
4. She Was a Panelist on the Oct. 2014 Engineers Without Borders Canada Discussion
She was a part of the Oct. 2014 Engineers Without Borders panel, which is an organization that brings “people and ideas together to tackle the most crucial causes of poverty and inequality,” according to its LinkedIn page.
She described her role as encouraging “students to consider the effects of their engineering approach and determining the type of engineer they want to be.”
The theme was problem definition and formulation. In practice, before solving a problem, professionals must first define the problem itself. For example, in medicine the focus is often on how to treat patients as quickly and effectively as possible. However, rather than solving this problem, it may be more effective to focus on preventing people from becoming sick in the first place.
5. She and Cena Are in the Early Stages of Their Relationship
According to Nina Safai, a Canadian blogger who spoke with Life & Style, the couple have only been on a few dates.
“John and his new girlfriend have been out in the public multiple times. I’ve seen them together four times now. It started on March 3, and I’ve been running into them once or twice a week since then. I first saw them at Thierry dessert shop — it seemed like their first or second date.”
It has yet to be confirmed is Shariatzadeh will appear in the stands to cheer her new boyfriend on at Wrestlemania 35.