The Most Innovating Things Happening for Women In Engineering 2019

The Engineering field has been dominated by men, but we ask ourselves why?

Women are stereotyped engineering related topics do not typically interest them. Combined with the misconception of men performing better in subjects such as maths or science. This produces the problem of underrepresentation of women in the field, making them much less likely to choose an engineering programme at university as a result.

With the rapid technological advances, there is a major push for more professionals in the field to meet the demands. That it is sad to see such a loss of untapped talent in the world.

Despite this, the paradigm is shifting. Some universities are beginning to break the gender barriers to ensure all students – both male and female – are equipped with the full range of employability skills needed to thrive as engineers in the 21st-century.

With all that said and done, we will now look at the most innovating programs that are helping women get into engineering.

WES

The Women’s Engineering Society is a charity and a professional network of women engineers, scientists and technologists offering inspiration, support and professional development. Working in partnership, they support and inspire women to achieve as engineers, scientists and as leaders; they encourage the education of engineering; and they support companies with gender diversity and inclusion.

The charity quotes that there is only 11% of female engineers in the UK, and possibly the lowest rate in Europe. They believe there is still much to do in regards to support employers to increase diversity and opportunity.

Here is just some of their current projects, initiatives and schemes:

  • STEM Returners – starting in 2018, a programme for returners and transferrers across science, technology, engineering and mathematics
  • MentorSET – a mentoring programme for women in STEM
  • WE50 – an annual awards scheme to recognise 50 influential women in engineering and STEM 
  • The Karen Burt Award – recognising the best newly chartered young woman engineer.
  • WES Centenary – this year, they will be 100 years old!

They also spend time connecting with women through conferences, lectures, e-newletter, The Woman Engineer journal, social media, clusters and student groups.  They make it a priority to use opportunities to present at conferences and seminars. WES, they’re members and partners are also helping to evolve workplace cultures so that women feel supported in the workplace and have:

  • Appropriate working conditions, facilities, and role models to inspire and support them.
  • the full range of flexible working options are available
  • that equal work is rewarded with equal pay and
  • women are empowered to flourish as technical women and managers at all skill levels

Charities like this are really making a difference and providing young women with opportunities that they didn’t know existed.

STEM

Stem stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. It is the largest provider of education careers support and work with schools and colleges across the UK. They are dedicated to raising young people’s engagement and achievement in STEM subjects and careers.

Although STEM does help boys and girls across the UK, we are going to look at how they help to support women in engineering. They make it a priority that women are made aware of their services. They ensure that they are connecting with relevant female groups on a weekly basis, utilising Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to work with groups such as Women in Computing (Imperial), WISE, Women in Technology, woinco and Science grrl. They post content, comments and live vacancies; in turn attracting female visitors to STEM Graduates.

Here are just a few examples of organisations/campaigns they work with:

  • The WISE Campaign – A campaign to inspire girls and women to study and pursue careers within women in STEM fields.
  • STEMettes – An organisation running panel events, hackathons and exhibitions aimed at inspiring the next generation of women into STEM.
  •  Women’s Engineering Society – A network of female engineers, technologists and scientists offering both support and professional development opportunities. 
  • Women in Technology – An information resource aimed to promote female employment within IT and technology. 
  • ScienceGrrl – A grassroots organisation representing the female face of science in the UK, working to inform women in STEM policy at a national level.
  • STEMNET – A network of ambassadors working to encourage young people who are under-represented within women in STEM subjects and careers to pursue their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths. 
  • CodeFirst:Girls – An organisation working with companies and young women with the intention of increasing the number of women working in tech.
  • Sparxx – A division of the Women’s Engineering Society focussed on inspiring girls to become part of the next generation of innovative thinkers.
  •  BCSWomen – A specialist group aligned to the Chartered Institute for IT, providing a networking platform for professional women in IT. 

The great thing about programs like these is the value they provide to women across the UK. This is something as technical Recruitment Experts that is really close to us as we make it our responsibility to contribute to STEM incentives.

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