International Women in Engineering Day is an international awareness campaign, held every 23 June, to celebrate the outstanding achievements of women engineers around the world, raise the profile of women in engineering and focus attention on the amazing career opportunities available to girls in engineering.
The UK has the lowest percentage of female engineering professionals in Europe, at 11%, while Latvia, Bulgaria and Cyprus lead with nearly 30%, so there is clearly work to be done in the UK to redress the balance and this is supported by 64% of engineering employers saying a shortage of engineers in the UK is a threat to their business*.
As recruitment consultants working within engineering and technology related fields, we are also very aware of the gender imbalance within these disciplines. We strive to raise awareness of the opportunities that are available to women and men within broadcast media technology, as well as being an equal opportunities employer ourselves, recognising that there is strength in diversity and equality – you can read more about our Equality & Diversity Policy here.
You can also show your support via the Thunderclap campaign on Twitter on Saturday. For 2018 the theme is #RaisingTheBar.
Some background to the event:
National Women in Engineering Day was launched for the first time in the UK on 23 June 2014 by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES) to celebrate its 95th anniversary. Since its launch in 2014 the day has grown hugely over subsequent years to the point where it received UNESCO patronage in 2016.
In 2017, National Women in Engineering Day became international for the first time due to the interest and enthusiasm developed by the international audience and participants in the previous years. International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) was born to allow the celebration of women in engineering to become global.
What is WES?
The Women’s Engineering Society (WES) is a UK charity which started in 1919 at the end of the First World War when the women who had worked in technical jobs during the war wanted to continue with this work. Click here for more information.
A change of law to ensure that the country reverted to a pre-war setting when the War finished meant that women were unable to continue with their (engineering) jobs, and were unwanted in the technical professions. The pioneering and influential women of the time set up the Women’s Engineering Society, and have been working since that time to ensure equality for women in this non-traditional sector. Today WES is a membership organisation which has the following three roles:
- Women: Support women to achieve their potential as engineers, applied scientists and leaders and to reward excellence.
- Education: Encourage and promote the education, study and application of engineering.
- Sustainability: Work with organisations and influencers to promote gender diversity and equality in the workplace and sustain the historic legacy and future effectiveness of the Women’s Engineering Society.
You can find out more about WES here.