Plant & Works Engineering

Inaugural National Women in Engineering Day on 23 June 2014

Published:  20 June, 2014

The Women's Engineering Society (WES) is launching the first National Women in Engineering Day on 23 June 2014 - a day dedicated to raising the profile and celebrating the achievements of women in engineering. The day will mark the 95th anniversary of the Women's Engineering Society which was set up in 1919 by women who worked in technical roles during the First World War.

This highly successful inaugural day has captured the imagination of a large number of engineering companies, organisations and educational establishments who are organising a variety of interesting events to celebrate the day.

A selection of the events of the day can be seen on the NWED website, and these include:

• a First Edition event at Glaziers Hall (London Bridge) for 100 Year 7-8 girls, sponsored by the Worshipful Company of Scientific Instrument Makers

• bring your daughter and a friend to work day by Ford, to try to encourage girls without a family member in engineering to go into the profession

• a wikipedia edit-o-thon at RAEng to increase the profile of women engineers on wikipedia

• an online competition by Crossrail to invite more girls aged 16-19 to consider careers in Engineering and to provoke students to think of creative ways to encourage the next generation of female engineers

• an Atkins event in Bristol showcasing the ways in which the engineering consultancy attracts and retains women in engineering

• a Tour de France themed girls day with WISET in Sheffield

• Talent2030 are doing a countdown of inspirational female engineers and exciting engineering facts/quotes and will be compiling these into a video to launch on the day

Dawn Bonfield, vice president of the Women's Engineering Society says 'The idea behind the day is to be as creative as possible and find innovative ways to celebrate and focus attention on careers in engineering for women and girls. In the UK less than 10% of the engineering workforce are women - National Women in Engineering Day is an excellent opportunity to do something positive to change this'.

The Women's Engineering Society has its own event in London to mark the day in the form of a one day conference called Women in Engineering: The Challenge where a great line up of speakers will look at the business case for employing more women in engineering.

WES has also launched a schools outreach programme during this anniversary year to replicate the work done by women who built aircraft wings during WW1. The activity, called Magnificent Women (and their flying machines) looks at the Magnificent Women in aerospace/aviation of the last 100 years including Amy Johnson, Amelia Earhart and Tilly Shilling, and this activity - supported by funding from an RAEng Ingenious Grant and an RAeS Centennial grant - is being delivered for the first time to Alton Convent School in Hampshire on 13 June.