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Thursday 03 August 2017

Closing the gap in engineering

According to the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Skills and Demand in Industry survey, women represent only 9% of the engineering workforce in the UK.

This low number is contributing to a number of problems including the skill shortage and the gender pay gap in the industry.

To try and tackle these issues, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and AESSEAL® donated £50,000 to Sheffield Hallam University to support a new programme of scholarships and bursaries aimed at encouraging more women to pursue a career in engineering.

Victoria Rigby received one of these Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and AESSEAL® scholarships. Victoria is from Doncaster and completed a BSc in Internet Computing at London South Bank University in 2005, she applied for the scholarship so that she could return to university and retrain in engineering. She's now enrolled on a MSc in Mechanical Engineering.

Victoria said: "Most of my family work in engineering in some form, but when choosing career options at 18, the limited support for women to progress into engineering meant that I didn’t feel able to follow this career path at the time. 

"Since graduating I've worked in various administration roles, including with the Department of Engineering and Maths at Sheffield Hallam where I've had the opportunity to develop my interests further. 

"I really engage with the problem solving and design elements within engineering, and I hope to become a design engineer in the future. I'm inspired by the passion that I've seen from the staff at the engineering department in Sheffield Hallam and aspire to be as passionate about the subject as they are. 

"Through this scholarship I have the opportunity to follow a new career path, and also to encourage more women of all ages to consider the many different opportunities within engineering and make more informed decisions about their own futures."

Find out more about the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and AESSEAL® Postgraduate Scholarship.

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