Many ways to get a career in engineering

TEENAGE girls from across the island’s secondary schools spent the day familiarising themselves with a variety of engineering careers as part of International Women in Engineering Day 2022.

The day saw 160 Year 9 and 10 students, who were keen to debunk the male stereotype in the engineering industry, take part in various activities and listen to the stories of successful women who have made it in the sector.

The Women’s Engineering Society found that in June 2021 just 16.5% of engineers were women, and vice-principal of The Guernsey Institute, College of Further Education, Jeanette Hart, hoped that by hosting the event it would open up the options to Guernsey’s young girls.

‘I think that often girls don’t believe that engineering jobs are for them, and so we’re hoping to get rid of that preconceived idea and give the students much more of an insight into careers in engineering,’ she said. ‘The purpose of today is to tap into as many pathways as possible, as you can enter the industry in multiple ways, whether that be vocationally, IB or A-levels.’

Twenty practical activities were set up for the students to take part in, including those related to wind and solar power, bioplastics and astronomy.

Kiera Murphy, 15, took part in an activity building wind turbines powered by a fan.

‘Engineering is something I’m definitely interested in but I’m not sure what area I’d want to go into, so it’s useful to see different parts of it,’ she said.

Students were also given an in-depth talk of the airport fire appliance.

‘I’m not sure I’d want a career in the service, but it was really interesting to hear about how everything works in the fire engine,’ said Aimee Lilley, 15.

Katie Smith, 14, said that she would be using the event to see where her interests were, but said that she enjoyed having the talk from the airport fire service. She was also looking forward to exploring the wind turbines and taking part in a water hunt.

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