WISE has a mission to increase the involvement of young women and other under-represented groups in apprenticeships in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Find out more about our work with schools, colleges and universities in this section.
If you are interested in becoming a member of WISE as an educational establishment, please visit our Membership page for more information and to see what we can offer you.
JCB Academy tackles the gender balance issue in engineering apprenticeships head on
The first of the University Technical Colleges (UTCs), JCB Academy, which specialises in engineering and is a member of WISE, has been told by the Office of the Schools Adjudicator that setting aside half of its places for female students breaches the Equality Act 2010. The school changed its admission policy last year to redress the position of the year before, when girls took up just 11 of the 120 places. We are in discussion with JCB Academy, who are members of WISE, about how they and other UTCs can tackle the under-representation of girls without falling foul of the law. Contact WISE associate Fay Best for further information.
Paula Gwinnett, Director of Engineering at The JCB Academy said;
“The JCB Academy is a pioneering educational institution achieving superb outcomes for young men and women. We are on a mission – Developing the Engineers and business leaders of the future - but the only future that makes sense is one where all of our talents are brought to bear on the technological challenges that we face. We need more Engineers and we need Engineers with a diverse range of skills and perspectives – that means that we need more women engineers too.
As an educational institution we do all the usual outreach and open days, we have ‘Girls into Engineering’ events and even invite their mums! But we need to do something to shift the perception that Engineering is no place for a woman....to every tool at our disposal. If we were talking about any other profession than Engineering where women were so woefully under-represented there would be outrage – If paradigms can be shifted in medicine, law and journalism then why not in Engineering? No one disputes our ‘laudable aim’ we just need to bring all of our creativity and talent to engineering a solution.”
The Range Rover Evoque WISE Scholarship
Zara Phillips seen here following in the footsteps of her Grandmother, the Queen, an ATS volunteer in World War II.
WISE are delighted to announce this exciting collaboration between Jaguar Land Rover and WISE to offer sponsorship to three female scholars wishing to pursue engineering at University or as an apprentice.
The award is closed for 2013 - please check back in Spring 2014 when we will be inviting applications for the next round.
According to a report published by EngineeringUK, Britain needs to double the number of engineering graduates and triple the number of engineering apprentices by 2020 to meet industry needs. At present, just thirteen per cent of engineering undergraduates are female, a problem Land Rover is determined to address. In addition to the Range Rover Evoque WISE Scholarship, Land Rover already runs specific training schemes to support ambitious female engineers.
The Range Rover Evoque WISE Scholarship will provide a £3,000 bursary to three female students or apprentices who would like to explore a career or further studies in engineering. In addition the winners will be provided with mentoring support from both Land Rover senior engineers and WISE representatives.
To find out more about the scholarship and to hear Zara Phillips talking about the role of women in engineering in the UK watch the video here.