December 2017
Women's Engineering Society eNewsletter
Welcome to the December edition of the WES newsletter! 

In this month's newsletter we report on the WES Student Conference and bring you updates from WES, upcoming events, job postings and news from our partners. 

Job listings are found in the WES Jobs section below or you can click here.  

The Women's Engineering Society is committed to supporting women in engineering. Click through the following link for more information on  being a WES memberIt costs just a pound a week and helps us to do our work to inspire and support women to achieve their potential as engineers, applied scientists and technical leaders.
If you have any news you would like to share with WES, please email us on

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WES Updates and Events
WES wishes you a Merry Christmas 
 and a Happy New Year!
Easyfundraising for WES

Don't forget that doing all your Christmas and January sales shopping online via easyfundraising is such a simple way to raise free donations for WES. There are over 3,300 participating retailers and brands including John Lewis, Amazon, Expedia and eBay and every time you make a purchase, a percentage of what you spend will be donated to us at no additional cost to you. 

Please register, to help us raise more vital funds than ever this festive season. Thank you.
STEM Returners update

In amongst the Christmas shopping and festive plans make sure you set some time aside to focus on your goals for 2018. If you are interested in transferring or returning to STEM #returntostem there is still time to register for the Kier programme. There are several other programmes being developed to kick off in the New Year so please watch this space! 

Check out
Launch of the WES Hardship Fund

Through support from Cirrus Logic, a WES Hardship Fund has been launched to provide financial assistance for two students in financial hardship. The funds provide financial support to current female engineering (or allied sector) undergraduates who have met unforeseen financial hardship during their studies, aiming to provide assistance to these students experiencing difficulty meeting their living costs. 

WES Young Members' Board 
YMB Essay Competition 
Earlier this year, the Young Members' Board (YMB) ran an essay competition entitled 'Give Yourself the Edge' with the theme 'Engineering a Better World'. This was in line with the newly released WES posters designed to show engineering as more accessible to females. The competition was aimed at high school children and received 81 entrants, including one from Australia, with over half of the essays being written by male students. Members of the YMB narrowed down the applicants to a top six and final judging was undertaken by Jane Priston, the 2016 winner of the Amy Johnson Inspiration Award.
The final winner in the 11-14 category was Thomas Lemon with an essay on 'The Pivitol Role of Engineering in Our Lives. The 15-18 category was won by Daniel Lehmann with an essay entitled 'How Israel May Hold the Answers to the Global Water Crisis'. Read the winning essays here.

YMB panel session "Getting on the Career Ladder: Your Questions Answered" at the WES Student Conference 
It was felt that although successful female engineers in high level positions are fantastic role models, it can sometimes be quite daunting whilst at university to see how that career path is forged and obtainable. The YMB wanted their session to be open to all students and demonstrate how the transition is made between university and starting off in engineering careers - the first rung of the career ladder. 
Questions flooded in from the students, who were very engaged, and covered a multitude of topics. Many wanted to know what route is best - graduate scheme or direct entry; what the perks are of becoming a chartered engineer; is a PhD suitable in certain types of engineering; and how to prepare for interviews. Julia Elkouby from UCL expertly chaired the session, which lasted one hour but could have gone on for many more! Based on the success of this year, the YMB will return to run a similar activity at the conference next year. 

One of our new YMB members, Laura Davies, was recently selected for the Channel 4 TV show 'Escape' after completing a series of interviews and tests. 'Escape' is an engineering/survival reality TV show in which a team of five engineers find themselves within a crash site in a hazardous environment and with scrap, tools and ingenuity, have to engineer a way to civilization lead by 'SAS Who Dares Wins', Ant Middleton. Laura took part in episode five, and found herself on Europe's largest Glacier; Vatnajokull in Iceland, within a crash site containing a Jetstream 31 and two snowmobiles. Incredibly, whilst battling the gruelling conditions, surviving on minimum rations and after few engineering hiccups, the team Laura was part of managed to escape from the glacier. They constructed a tank steered vehicle from the snowmobile tracks, the wing section from the Jetstream 31, a make shift chassis and the Jetstream 31 cockpit. 
When asked about her experience, Laura said, "It was very challenging but definitely gave me confidence in my own abilities and skills and an insight into what I am capable of with regards to engineering, personal skills and endurance. I fully recommend pushing yourself to your absolute limits when offered the chance to, as you learn a lot about yourself". Listen to the full interview here.
WES Cambridgeshire Cluster - Wine Tasting!

SAVE THE DATE - WES members in Cambridgeshire are invited to a wine tasting event with CamAWiSE on Tuesday 23 January 2018. Look out for details in the next WES eNewsletter or  sign up to the CamAWiSE newsletter here
WES London Cluster - Stronger and stronger!

The WES London Cluster held their first Committee meeting on 23 October 2017 at UCL. Members showed their support and enthusiasm at the meeting and an activity plan for 2018 has been drafted! The cluster's coordinators Francesca Donadoni (UCL Ph.D student) and Adriana Vargas-Colwill (KBR) welcomed the committee and chaired the meeting.  Committee members include Carolina Escudero (UK Power Networks) and Heather Daniell (LoGi Food Tech).   We hope to grow the committee and increase the participation of WES members, as well as including predominant figures from corporates and WES

The next meeting will take place on 18 December 2017.  For further information email:
WES Student Groups

During the student conference, the WES student groups got together over lunch for an informal meeting. As well as sharing what their group had been up to, they chatted about how they could best share resources and support each other, and how WES can support them. Student groups affiliated with WES can join this exciting network, which allows them to apply for funding up to £250 to support events, and get support  from the WES Student Groups and Universities Liaison  finding speakers and industrial contacts.
WES Loughborough Student Group

Twelve engineering students set off from Loughborough University to promote STEM subjects and inspire the pupils at the Leicester High School for Girls. They held four different workshops, including Bridging the gap and Clever Copters. The activities were a huge success, the pupils were delighted to have a chance to be creative while engaging in Aeronautical, Civil and Electronics engineering. The teachers and academics at the school were also incredibly happy to be a part of the important day, opening their eyes to the variety of career opportunities in STEM. 
History of Women in Engineering at the IET
27 November 2017

This fascinating sold out conference (there are plans to publish the proceedings) examined the contributions of women in Britain in the fields of engineering in nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Henrietta Heald, who is currently writing Magnificent Women and their Revolutionary Machines, and Nina Baker gave engrossing keynote speeches. Following on from these talks were sessions on :

Women in the Air

Louise Innes: Tongland Works in Galloway and the Women Engineers

Tony Royle: The Impact of the Women of the Technical Section of the Admiralty Air Department on the Structural Integrity of Aircraft during World War One

Women at Sea and on the Railways

Keith Harcourt and Roy Edwards: Blanche Thornycroft, naval architect

Dr Becky Peacock: Uncovering the secrets of Canadian Pacific

Women in Business / Workplace

Graeme Gooday and Sophie Forgan: Engineering in the family: uncovering women's early collaborative roles in technology

David Hay: It's only temporary: women electrical There are plans to publish the proceedings. engineers in the Post Office telephone service in WWII

Alice White: Women Engineers and Wikipedia - a call to arms to increase the number of entries for women engineers and WES members in particular onto Wikipedia.

The conference was a great networking opportunity for the plans around WES's 2019 Centenary celebrations.

WES on the INWES Board
At ICWES17 in Delhi, a new Board for the International Network of Women Engineers and Scientists (INWES) was elected and we said goodbye to various key WES members who had come to end of their term on the INWES Board: we thank Margaret Ajibode, exiting her role as Secretary General, who has been an INWES champion at WES for many years. Roseni Dearden, a WES trustee and International Director, has also sat on the Board for several terms leading Communications. In recognition of the hard work that has gone into creating and delivering 16 high quality INWES newsletters which go out to over 60 countries, Roseni with her daughter, Nina Dearden, received an INWES award at ICWES17.

The new Board includes: Dr Georgia Kremmyda, WES trustee and Education Director, who represents Warwick University at INWES, and Dr Sarah Peers, WES Vice President, elected as INWES Deputy President and formal WES representative at INWES.

For updates and news on INWES and the European regional network, follow on Twitter @INWES_Europe and @INWES_Global for the global INWES news, and on Facebook.
WES Council Member's company awarded top innovation accolade

IntelliDigest Ltd, a Biotechnology Start-up company founded and Directed by WES Council Member Ifeyinwa Kanu, was judged the winner of the Energy award in recognition of an intelligent and automated kitchen fitted anaerobic food waste digester in the Institution of Engineering and Technology's (IET) Innovation Awards winners for 2017. 
The Woman Engineer Journal
The winter edition of the WES journal is out now! Click here to read about:
  • Leena Gade's fascinating insight into her career as a race engineer. She talks about being a woman engineer in a male dominated industry.
  • Find out who the 2017 WES award winners were
  • Become an active bystander and contribute to the culture of inclusion
And more...
Global Day of the Engineer 
Wednesday 4 April 2018

WES is proud to be a Partner for the Global Day of the Engineer in 2018. This day celebrates all engineers, men and women all over the world. Make a statement to the world by celebrating the importance of engineers. It is easy and rewarding -- and it's not too early to start the planning process. Do you know an engineer or group you'd like to recognise? Are you interested in doing hands-on activities with students? Do you have photos of engineering innovations, outreach events, or inspiring engineers you can share on Global Day?

Visit to take the pledge and learn more
FeatureWES Student Conference
2017 WES Student Conference: Engineering Inspiration

On the 24 and 25 November 2017, 133 students gathered at Aston University for the ninth annual WES Student Conference: Engineering Inspiration. This year the conference theme was Engineering to Change the World.
Welcome addresses were given by Kirsten Bodley, CEO, WES; Prof. Alison Hodge of Aston University and Dr. Georgia Kremmyda of the University of Warwick and WES's Trustee and Director of Education. The keynote addresses the "Trials and triumphs of a career journey in engineering" by Dr. Andrew Tyler, Northrop Grumman and "Can You Choose a Career? Chocolate, Beer and Shopping" Dr. Rachel Cooke, Amazon (winner of the best title of the conference), were followed by an inspiring session on Engineers without Borders by Katie Cresswell-Maynard. The After-Dinner Speech on Seizing Career Opportunities was given by Dawn Childs, Group Engineering Director, Merlin Entertainments Group.
Day Two started with a WES Young Members Board Panel Discussion: "Getting on the career ladder: your questions answered" given by Dr. Jo Douglas, Kate Mactear, Maeve Higham, Caroline Carslaw & Deborah Harris. This was followed by CPD Workshops covering "You can "Walk the Walk" but can you "Talk the Talk"? The difference between good and great"; CVs and Applications; Unconscious Bias; and Global Dimensions in Engineering. The final panels covered Global Health; Renewable Energy; and Sustainable Infrastructures. 
"I had such an insightful and inspiring weekend at my first ever WES conference - it really reminded me of why I chose to study Chemical Engineering in the first place! I especially loved Dr. Rachel Cooke's career journey talk: ''Can You Choose a Career? Chocolate, Beer and Shopping''. It really made me think about my future career goals & some of the choices I will have to make - what am I passionate about? What matters to me the most? What are the industries of the future? How do I want to look at work? Ultimately, it was truly inspiring to see just how exciting and varied a career in Engineering can be!" Nimi Oladapo 3rd Year MEng Chemical Engineering, University of Sheffield 

Our thanks to all the speakers, sponsors, delegates and staff at Conference Aston for making the conference a success! Particular thanks to Eman Omairey of Aston University, and Sarah Kuklewicz and Caz Ingram from the Open University for their invaluable help. 

Supported by our sponsors,  32 WES bursaries  were awarded this year. As part of the bursary, students are required to submit a short article on a session of their choice, so look out for them on the WES website early next year and in the Spring issue of the Woman Engineer journal.

We would like to thank our conference sponsors and supporters:
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WES Jobs
Tired Engineer in Training
Eleanor Yong: Programming languages
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Eleanor Yong: Courage
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Upcoming Events
Women and Work APPG: Annual Report Launch 
Making the Industrial Strategy Work for Women

16 January 2018, 12.00 - 13.00

The Women and Work APPG has been working all year to explore how to make the industrial strategy work for women. They have heard evidence on policy, innovation and best practice from organisations across the UK, allowing them to develop a series of recommendations for Government and for employers and showcase some of the best examples of how women can benefit from the changing nature of work.

You are invited to  attend a reception to launch the Women and Work All-Party Parliamentary Group's annual report.  The Minister for Climate Change and Industry, Claire Perry MP and Shadow Minister for the Industrial Strategy, Chi Onwurah MP will be at the launch to share their thoughts on the recommendations.

If you would like to attend please RSVP to Isabella Hunter-Fajardo on 020 7592 9490 or email
Cyber Careers Show

17 January 2018 [Free]
IET London: Savoy Place

Ethical Hacker? Digital Forensics Expert? Cryptographer? Which one could be you?

Have you ever thought about a career in the emerging and in-demand profession of cyber security? With demand for cyber security skills set to rocket in the next five years, there's an increasing and wide range of varied and lucrative roles on offer.

Come and find out how your skills and talents can make a world of difference, and discover the breadth of opportunities available by attending our one-day careers show. Register here
WES are invited to the evening session (6.30pm - 9.30pm) aimed at experienced professionals already in the industry and those seeking a career transition. If you have a cyber background and would like to promote WES at the event please contact Cath Heslop:
Women in Construction Summit

6 March 2018 [£125-150 plus VAT discount for WES Members with code WES15]
8 Northumberland Avenue, London 

A groundbreaking new conference for women in the construction industry is brought to you by the creators of the largest global Women in Tech event series!

Through inspirational keynotes, examination of pivotal industry trends, interactive panel discussions on how to solve the gender gap, and career development workshops, this conference provides all the content and networking opportunities you need to flourish in the sector.

Find out more here
MACH 2018

9-13 April 2018 [Free]
NEC, Birmingham

MACH 2018 will be the biggest and best manufacturing technologies showcase in the country. With over 600 exhibitors showcasing live, working machinery MACH is a great place to get a feel for what manufacturing is all about.

The show has an Education & Development Zone specifically designed for students aged 11-19, and provides a unique opportunity for students to interact with industry and find out about technologies and careers in manufacturing.

Registration is now open for school/college groups: 
More Upcoming Events

To find out more about these previously advertised events   visit the WES website:
  • Leadership Conference for Women in Energy, 17-18 January 2018
  • 2018 Everywoman in Tech Forum, 8 February 2018 [10% discount code DP10 book before 31 December]
More News
Design Awards 2018

Heatrae Sadia is delighted to be announcing the Design Awards competition for the second year running! Once again, they are searching for the next generation of talent to design an innovative product to a manufacturing standard. This Design Award competition is to celebrate innovative design that encourages efficient energy use and overcomes various design challenges such as space consideration, increasing production costs and lack of industry innovation.

The scheme is open to UK University students on a relevant degree program. Your goal is to design an innovative solution in the "Water Heating" product category for a Commercial or Domestic market.

L'Oréal UK & Ireland Fellowships For Women in Science

This International Programme recognises the achievements of exceptional female scientists and awards them with fellowships to help further their research. This year five outstanding female early-career scientists will be awarded  a bursary of £15,000

The fellowship awards are open to female early-career researchers working in the field of life and physical sciences, engineering, mathematics and computer sciences.

This unique award is designed to provide practical help to aid female researchers in continuing their cutting-edge research. The fellowship can be spent as the fellow wishes; it could buy a piece of scientific equipment, help to cover child care costs or be used to fund conference travel. 

Apply online before applications close on the 16 February 2018 at:
Call for participation: academic study on the frontier of women in leadership

Demyst Consulting is helping Birkbeck College, University of London, with a study headed 'Advancing Women in Business Organisations: New Insights and Practices'. This study forms part of an international call for papers for a US conference to be held next year.

We are looking for female candidates at mid-career to take part in the study at levels below executive committee, drawn from both line and staff positions.

This study will be interview based - but the results will be anonymised to insulate individual organisations. This is an excellent opportunity to project influence externally and to affirm values internally. It will also add to corporate reporting and brand positioning.

If you would like your organisation to get involved, or if you would like participate yourself or to nominate someone else, please email
International Women's Day 2018 is coming!

How will you be celebrating women engineers? And what will your International Women's Day #PressforProgress campaign look like? Have you ordered your International Women's Day Event Packs yet?  Search events, secure speakers, contribute resources and more at - And watch this space, 2018 Partnerships announced soon!
And there is WES' International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) on 23 June
Engineering grads failing to secure jobs  
CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) has released a new report ' The graduate employment gap: expectations versus reality.' Worryingly, it found that despite an increased government focus on STEM education, STEM graduates are more likely to be unemployed than other grads, six months after graduation.
Unemployment figures are lower than ever before but compared to a national unemployment rate of 4.9%, CIPD found STEM unemployment rates are 8.6% for computer science graduates, 6.5% for physical science graduates, 6% for engineering and technology graduates, and 6.5% for mathematical science graduates.
How can we address this gap to ensure talented Engineering graduates have the vital employability skills needed to make it into the labour market more quickly? A critical element of the solution is access to quality work experience for undergraduates to ensure that, alongside their education, they obtain the knowledge and skills needed to become workplace ready. 
Placer's new matchmaking tech enables businesses of all sizes to reach a diverse young talent pool of digitally native university students with key skills, far beyond their word-of-mouth networks with just one, free, post. Leading employers in the Engineering space are already signed up to Placer to improve work experience opportunities for university students. Sign up now at
Women in Engineering Study

Hanna Rose, a student at Oxford Brookes University, is conducting research as part of her undergraduate thesis which aims to analyse and evaluate the current debates surrounding the reasons for gender imbalance within the engineering sector, with the intention of proposing effective strategies to improve this issue. She is looking for female engineers and engineering students to participate in her questionnaire which should take 3-5 minutes to complete. 

Faith Wainwright appointed 2018 President of The Institution of Structural Engineers

Faith is a Director of Arup and an expert in skill-based communities. She is a champion of education who established the Arup University Masters Programme. In 2012 she was awarded an MBE for her significant contribution to the Built Environment and Engineering Professions.

Award-winning company culture for women engineers

Congratulations to prime employers for women, Schneider Electric and AECOM on recent Business Culture Award 2017 wins. Schneider Electric's Francesca Stone and Kristen Baker won the Business Culture Ambassador award, with the company highly commended in the Diversity and Inclusion category which was won by AECOM. Karen Britton from AECOM was highly commended in the Ambassador category. Get insight into these progressive companies and more at
All-Female Team Compete in Land Rover World Finals 

The first-ever all-female engineering team have smashed their fundraising target to enable them to take up their well-deserved place in the Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge in Abu Dhabi. The Denbigh School Sixth Form team 'Epsilon Engineers', secured their place with their impressive engineering skills at the UK Nationals, held at Silverstone in March this year. 

One of only four UK teams to travel to Abu Dhabi, the Denbigh students are the only all-female team to take up the challenge to design and build a special scale model 4x4 vehicle, which will be tested on a tough obstacle course. In a bid to become World Champions, the team's work will be judged against 24 teams from 17 countries.
Back2back Productions seek great STEM communicators

'Stunt Science' is all about analysing as well as showcasing some of the best user generated stunt videos on the internet. The series will include video clips of the most awe-inspiring stunts and challenges from around the World, followed by interviews with the daredevils and stunt people who have performed them, as well as a segment where we invite local experts to watch the stunt videos. The experts will analyse the clips and explain the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) involved in the stunt, whether it be the forces involved in a skydive / base jump or the biological effects on someone who has performed a gruelling challenge.

If you are interested in this opportunity email:
Channel 4 'LEGO MASTERS' Competition
WES Partners News
We would like to thank the following Partners renewing with WES for another year: Airbus and Cundall, both renewing as Company Partners; Imperial College, University of Edinburgh and University of Surrey renewing as Education Partners and FirstCo renewing as an SME Partner.
We would like to thank all our Partners for their continuing support of WES and wish them all a prosperous 2018.

WES' activity and attendance at external events 
  • 16 November, Renewable Energy themed event organised by FemEng (Glasgow University Female Engineering Society), Glasgow University, Caroline Carslaw was on the panel
  • 16-18 November, Skills Show & National Skills Finals, NEC Birmingham, attended by Dawn Childs
  • 20 November, Annual Presentation and Award Ceremony IMechE, London, attended by Charlie Allen and Chiara Heide
  • 23 November, Corps Autumn guest Dinner Night, attended by Benita Mehra
  • 23-24 November, ADEPT (Association of Directors of Engineering, environment, planning, transport), Manchester, Sarah Peers was invited as a speaker
  • 24 November, WES Partners meeting, Aston University
  • 24-25 November, WES Engineering Inspiration Student Conference, Aston University
  • 27 November, Seminar on the history of women in engineering, a WES co-sponsored event at the IET, Savoy Place, London attended by Shiva Dowlatshahi, Ceryl Evans, Carol Morris, Dawn Bonfield, Jessica Wade and Alice White
  • 1 December, Future Engineer, ICE, London, attended by Benita Mehra
  • 6 December, Stellar, attended by Dawn Childs
  • 6 December, POWERful Women Ambassador's Reception, London attended by Roseni Dearden
  • 6 December, Computer Weekly UKTech50, London, attended by Roseni Dearden
  • 6 December, Parliamentary Reception for the Year of Engineering, London, attended by Dawn Childs
  • 7 December, IET YWE event, attended by Yasmin Ali, Roseni Dearden, Jay Surti, Katherine Critchley, and Natalie Desty
  • 8 December, CIHT Annual Luncheon, to be attended by Kirsten Bodley
  • 11 December, Young Arab Women Leaders Conference, London attended by Benita Mehra
  • 12-13 December, Refuaid mentoring at Estee Lauder office, attended by Benita Mehra
  • 13 December Women 100 leadership and influence strategic forum Royal academy Sandhurst, attended by Benita Mehra who was on a panel discussion and a co-facilitator
  • 14 December, Promoting Women in STEM conference, Manchester, Kirsten Bodley  was invited as a speaker
  • 17-18 January, Leadership Conference for Women in Energy, London, Kirsten Bodley will be on the panel
  • 1 February, Online Careers Fair - Finding Ada
Have you read the WES Journal - The Woman Engineer?
All issues of the WES journal are available here. Become a member and get your own copy delivered to your door.

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