Celebrating Women in Engineering

An initiative designed to promote the participation of women in engineering has been inaugurated with a special launch event.

Colchester Institute has partnered with the Women’s Engineering Society (WES) to raise awareness around the study and practice of engineering amongst women.

The primary goal is to boost participation levels with female students by promoting careers in the wider Engineering sector through further and higher education, including apprenticeships. Engineering UK reported last year that women comprise only 16.5% of all engineers in the workforce.

The event at the colleges Braintree Campus, which has undergone significant investment in engineering and advanced manufacturing facilities, concluded with a ceremonial cake-cutting to consolidate the partnership.

In attendance were a number of female guests from the engineering sector, along with local employers and members of the local WES cluster group.

Alison Andreas, Principal and Chief Executive at Colchester Institute, spoke at the event and reflected on the huge demand for engineers, both now and for many years to come, across North Essex and beyond.

“Membership of the Women’s Engineering Society was an important way of encouraging more young people and adults to consider careers in Engineering. We now need to get the message out to every man, every woman, and (given huge future demand) every child that careers in Engineering are for absolutely everyone. They are exciting, rewarding and absolutely vital for a safe, healthy, economically stable, and sustainable future for the UK”.

Elizabeth Donnelly, CEO, Women’s Engineering Society, welcomed the partnership.

“It is my pleasure to welcome Colchester Institute into the Women’s Engineering Society community, as our first further education partner. I look forward to working together, to increase diversity and inclusion in the engineering sector.”

Following the event, a WES cluster meeting for Essex will shortly take place to discuss further outreach and activities to continue the initiative, including for International Women in Engineering Day, which takes place on June 23rd and celebrates the work that women engineers around the world are doing to support lives and livelihoods every day.