On 23 June 2014, Britain celebrated its very first national Women in Engineering Day promoted by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES). The society has been active for the past 95 years, created to encourage young girls to choose engineering as a career. As a second year Mechanical Engineering student, I was lucky enough to attend.
There were presentations from Dr Irene Turner, University of Bath, Dame Sue Ion, Chair of NIRAB and Dr Peter Bonfield, Chief Executive of BRE Group. The presentations were followed by a question and answer session, in which many issues were raised regarding the lack of knowledge among young girls about engineering. Following the Q & A session, all event organisers, speakers and guests were thanked by Irene for their cooperation.
The event was followed by a networking session where guests were provided with food and drinks. This session allowed a more relaxed environment to chat with speakers and other engineers in the audience.
It is clear that the engineering industry needs to have more balance between genders. With some companies having less than ten per cent female employees, change is inevitable. The Women’s Engineering Society is trying to close the gap between genders and prove that girls are as capable in this industry as boys. With enough motivation and drive, this movement will result in great changes and soon we will see growing number of girls choosing engineering as a career.