The theme of this year’s International Women in Engineering Day 2019 (INWED 2019) is “Transforming the Future,” as figures reveal engineering courses rank in the top 10 for women aged 16-35
As the country marks International Women in Engineering Day, figures revealed by Open Study College highlight that access to engineering courses, including A Level Biology, A Level Chemistry, and A Level Mathematics, ranked within the top 10 most popular courses for women aged 16-35 in 2019.
In 2018, only 12% of the UK’s engineering staff was female – the lowest percentage in Europe. In light of this low figure, much work has been undertaken by organisations and businesses alike to support an increase in the number of women working within the engineering industry.
Despite engineering being a career path in which women can excel, many still deem it something unsuitable or unachievable.
Open Study College, CEO Samantha Rutter, said: “In today’s society we often take for granted equality of opportunity, and assume young women know they can succeed in any career they so choose.
“Unfortunately, the stats show many young girls feel less confident in choosing STEM subjects in school. Even in more gender-neutral countries such as Sweden, research has found female students are still more inclined to study HEED (Health, Elementary Education and Domestic) subjects as they progress through their academic career.
“Events such as Women in Engineering Day are vital to continue to grow awareness of such career paths, but they also enable us as an education industry to reflect on the opportunities we offer to women, and ask how we can do more to highlight the availability of engineering as a viable option for women.”
INWED 2019, coordinated by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES), aims to increase the profile of women in engineering worldwide and focus attention on the career opportunities available to girls in engineering and related industries.
Dawn Childs, president of WES says of INWED19: “…there are still far too few women who even understand what engineering is let alone choose to become an engineer. International Women in Engineering Day is therefore so important to raise the profile and awareness of the fabulous opportunities that a career in engineering can bring.
“This year it is more pertinent than ever because our theme is #TransformTheFuture and so many forms of engineering do exactly that. So not only do we want to transform the future for girls and women by encouraging them to start a career in engineering or supporting them to excel and thrive in their current engineering career, but we will of course also be transforming the future of so much more with the engineering that they will do. So please participate in events or initiatives with us for INWED and help us to #TransformTheFuture!’’