"The best thing about my job is getting paid to be hands on and stuck into the deep end of something I absolutely love doing everyday. I think engineering is a great choice for girls because it enables you to experience so many new things and provides you with endless opportunities – it gives you the chance to find out what you are truly good at and love doing whilst having fun and working with a wide range of people."
Sara-Jayne Barker, Apprentice Engineer, Nestle
Positive female role models are important if we are to transform some of the preconceptions about who becomes a scientist, technologist, engineer or mathematician, both among the public, young girls, their teachers and parents. Role models can also inspire women already in STEM to continue and progress, and they can help all STEM managers and staff to break down barriers.
Role models may include women at the top of their career, but can also be women who are studying, volunteering or just starting out.
JTL Apprentice Ambassadors are part of a nationwide programme which is being delivered by training charity JTL. The Apprentice Ambassador Initiative aims to encourage more young women to enter apprenticeships in the craft sector.
Role Model Videos
Engineers at Thales
Thales, a Corporate Member of WISE, is committed to encouraging young women to pursue a career in engineering. We hope that these videos will inspire other women and girls to see the possibilities of careers in engineering. These videos were produced by WISE.
Watch the video about Thales Manufacturing Engineer Sam, who is on the Thales Engineering Graduate Development Programme and talks to WISE about her career.
Watch the video about Thales Systems Engineer Bhawana, who talks to WISE about the steps she took to pursue a career in engineering, including the Thales Graduate Development Programme.
Jade Aspinall, MBDA - Apprentice of the Year 2014
Jade Aspinall, from Bolton won the 2014 Apprentice of the Year and was crowned overall champion and bestowed the Best of British Engineering award. Watch the video
Inspiring careers in STEM
Women in Technology - A mini documentary investigating careers for Women in Technology and IT. Get the scoop from successful female role models at Bloomberg, American Express, Microsoft and PwC.
Your Future In Automotive - Rebecca Lees, a Body Structures Engineer from Jaguar Land Rover has worked on high-profile projects including the new Jaguar F-Type and talks about how she came to pursue a career in automotive, her education background and how an international work placement played a key role in setting her on a path to automotive engineering success! Watch the video to find out how she became an automotive engineer and what opportunities there are for you!
Careers in Engineering - A mini documentary investigating career opportunities in engineering and where STEM subjects can take you. Get the scoop from successful engineers and scientists at BP, TRW, Baker Hughes, the Bloodhound Project and ARUP.
Team Shift 2012 F1 in Schools USA National Champions - a team of 4 girls talking at the Atlanta TEDx Youth Day, their passion for F1 in Schools and the life changing experiences it has led to.
Female engineers talk about their jobs at WSP - this video was created to celebrate National Women in Engineering Day 2014
Leicester schoolgirl Saheefa Ishaq receiving the WISE Girl Award from WISE Royal Patron, HRH The Princess Royal.
The WISE Awards are about showcasing the talents and achievements of women and girls in the STEM environment and highlighting positive role models and case studies to inspire others.
Tips on engaging girls in STEM at the Big Bang Fair
The Women’s Engineering Society (WES) published specific guidelines and tips on engaging girls in science, technology and engineering for companies and exhibitors at the Big Bang UK Science and Engineering Fair, which took place from March 14th-17th 2013.
Put together by WES in association with WISE and funded by Atkins and Siemens, the brochure has been distributed to all corporate exhibitors by the event organisers, EngineeringUK. This guidance is part of a wider campaign of advice given by the Women’s Engineering Society to encourage more girls and women into engineering.
Dream it. Believe it. Do it.
Mandy Hickson. Having served as a fast jet pilot in the Royal Air Force for 17 years I decided it was time to leave for pastures new, but I wasn't quite ready to let go completely, so I joined the Air Experienced Flight at MOD Boscombe Down as a Volunteer Reservist. I now fly the Tutor aircraft and take cadets, aged between 13 and 18, on a flying experience that they will hopefully never forget!
Read the inspiration story: Dream it. Believe it. Do it.
Resources and Inspiration
If you are looking for a speaker, interviewee, mentor or committee member, or just an inspiring read, check out the following:
Women in Mining 100 Global Inspirational Women in Mining (pdf)
The Women in Mining UK (“WIM (UK)”) 100 Global Inspirational Women in Mining Project is an international collaboration between women in mining groups from the UK, Australia, Canada, South Africa and the United States. It is widely acknowledged that inspirational role models can play a large part in inspiring a new generation of professionals and we aim to facilitate development in this arena.
WISE Blog features a woman in STEM each month - ask questions and leave your comments.
Ingenious Women - 19 early and mid career women engineers, who all received Media Training through the Ingenious Women project at the UKRC.
Women in Astronomy - women who blog about astronomy, astrophysics and outer space. A dazzling and very varied array of writers.
@MyDayEngineer On twitter - Find out what engineers do all day.
Dot Diva is a community of women using computing to make a difference and build a better world. Find out about the many projects that different women have done and become a Dot Diva yourself!
Women’s Engineering Society - case studies of inspiring women in engineering.
What it's really like being an apprentice? Watch videos of engineering apprentices from National Grid and British Gas talk about what an apprenticeship is all about and why they enjoy the job.
The FDM everywoman in Technology Awards exist to uncover inspirational female role models in technology.
A-Z of Organisations supporting STEM and Widening Participation in Education. Many of the websites feature inspirational role models.
News, blogs etc
Esther Dyson: Breaking through tech’s glass ceiling
Esther Dyson has been called "the most influential woman in all the computer world". After fostering some of the biggest names in technology - and growing wealthy in the process - she is now trying to help people live better with a new health initiative.
(There are also videos of other women at the bottom of that page)
What's it like to be a woman in the engineering industry?
Short profiles and photos of 10 women in engineering.