Celebrating International Women in Engineering Day with First Edition

Today is International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) where we are celebrating the achievements of outstanding women engineers. This campaign has been created by Women’s Engineering Society (WES) to raise the profile of women in engineering and focus attention on the amazing career opportunities available to young women within this exciting industry. Research shows that the gender pay gap between male and female engineers has narrowed, but there are still eight times as many men as women in the industry. According to WISE women now represent only 8% of this group, down from 9% from 2015. Important dates such as INWED help promote engineering as a career for women and highlight the exciting possibilities that exist for females in engineering. 

Our First Edition scheme offers female only taster experiences, helping to address the underrepresentation of females in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) careers. First Edition works with employers such as the RAF, who sponsor 'girls only' taster events in order to address the stereotypes believed of employees within STEM careers, often circulated by the media. Many girls still believe that STEM-based careers, especially engineering, are more attractive as an option for boys. Our female only taster experiences create a comfortable environment for girls to unite and learn about STEM opportunities in a fun and exciting atmosphere.

Today, to celebrate INWED, the First Edition team are holding an all female event to expose them to the world of engineering, involving 50 year 8 and 9 students from three local schools. The schools involved are St. Ursula’s Convent School, Oasis Academy South Bank and Evelyn Grace Academy. They will be attending a First Edition STEM day hosted and supported by London South Bank University, which was the first in the UK to offer engineering study to women in 1920. 

Students will take part in two hands on STEM challenges. For the first challenge they will be working in teams to investigate the advantages and disadvantages of wind energy. They will be designing, building and testing their own wind turbine models, while experimenting with a number of different size and shape blades to achieve a wind turbine that produces the greatest output. The second challenge is the roller coaster challenge, where they build a model roller coaster track, investigating gravitational and kinetic energy. Students will also get the chance to meet and talk to students from London South Bank University – a great opportunity to find out more about studying an engineering course.

Mark Williams, EDT Education Director says “The EDT First Edition programme is now well established and growing annually. These "hands on" activities are designed to focus on young people from under-represented communities with the aim of raising their awareness of the opportunities available to them through careers in STEM. The days help to raise the aspirations and develop the abilities of youngsters through an applied learning experience based on problem solving, creativity and innovation. The EDT will continue to promote and provide these opportunities to everyone who can benefit from them." 

We are proud to support and inspire our future female engineers. Join us in promoting International Women in Engineering Day by using the hashtag #INWED17 and #MenAsAllies on social media. Thank you for your support.

Date published: 
June 22, 2017