Yorkshire Schools Build Bridges for Women in Engineering

Budding female engineers from schools across Yorkshire have taken part in a day of activities to mark National Women in Engineering Day.

Naomi Betts and Beth Wilkins of Roundhay School, Josie Rothera of the Institution of Civil Engineers (centre), and Aminah Nahfooz, Mahima Begum and Halimah Khan of Halifax Academy.
Naomi Betts and Beth Wilkins of Roundhay School, Josie Rothera of the Institution of Civil Engineers (centre), and Aminah Nahfooz, Mahima Begum and Halimah Khan of Halifax Academy.

Groups from schools across the region gathered at Leeds Beckett University to spend a day with volunteers from the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), who explained the benefits of being a woman in engineering, and led the girls in a practical engineering exercise.

The engineers from the ICE drew on their own experience studying and working in the civil engineering profession, which is responsible for planning, designing, building and maintaining the nation's infrastructure.

The highlight of the day was a bridge building exercise, which showed the girls participating how strong different materials can be when subjected to different forces. The event was one of many held in this region and across the UK by the ICE, other professional bodies and engineering businesses.

ICE Regional Director for Yorkshire and Humber, Penny Marshall, said: "Thanks to National Women in Engineering Day, many girls will have a better understanding of what civil engineers do, and may consider civil engineering as a career for the first time. By looking at the example of the role models leading today's event, they can enter the profession confident in the knowledge that it offers a diverse and challenging choice of careers.

"Over the last few years there has been a significant increase in the number of women in civil engineering, but there is still work to be done. This could be helped by parents encouraging their daughters to look at it as a career choice, whether through the apprenticeship route or a degree."

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