IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year nominees announced

Five young female engineers have been shortlisted for the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards 2015 for projects ranging from high-tech car sound systems to the next generation of sports stadiums.

Young female engineer award

The IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards aim to find female role models to help address the UK science and engineering skills crisis. Women currently represent only six per cent of the engineering workforce in the UK (source: 2014 IET Skills Survey), the lowest percentage in Europe.

If this trend continues, the UK will be in a significantly weakened position to find the 1.82 million engineers it is estimated the country will need 2012-2022 (according to Engineering UK).

These prestigious engineering industry awards aim to banish outdated engineering stereotypes of hard hats and greasy pipes and help change the perception that engineering is only a career for men.

And the nominees are...

The finalists shortlisted for awards are:

  • Ashleigh Sumner, 21, an Engineering Apprentice at Siemens who is currently working in the research and development department.
  • Helen Cavill, 31, a Process Improvement Manager at M&H Plastics who is currently working on automating dimensional measurement of plastic components.
  • Orla Murphy, 25, an Audio EQ Engineer at Jaguar Land Rover who produces exciting sound systems and features in Jaguar Land Rover vehicles.
  • Emma Goulding, 23, a Technical Apprentice (Controls) at Siemens specialising in the Power Generation Services sector.
  • Rossella Nicolin, 35, a Principal Structural Engineer at AECOM working on large sports venues and stadium projects worldwide.

Finding role models to get girls excited about engineering

Naomi Climer, IET president-elect, said: “Engineering is a hugely exciting and diverse career with the opportunity to do something life- or world-changing but the lack of women in the sector is a huge problem.

“The difficulty in attracting women into engineering is down to a combination of many things, including the image of engineers within the UK, careers advice girls are given in schools and the way that companies with engineering roles advertise their opportunities.

"It’s also a result of the lack of inspirational engineering role models for girls, which is why our Young Women Engineer of the Year awards are all about finding role models to get girls – and young people in general – excited and inspired about the possibilities of an engineering career.

These awards recognise and celebrate the women that do work in the industry and I’d like to congratulate Ashleigh, Helen, Orla, Emma and Rossella for making the final five.

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