Females targeted in engineering drive

Engineering is for everyone, not just for men, according to a national campaign looking to encourage more people to enter the industry.

Females targeted in engineering drive

Currently, females make up just 10% of the profession — a statistic Engineers Ireland is hoping to change.

The organisation also says there is a general shortage of engineers in this country, despite a rise in the number studying it at third level.

Forfas, the national policy advisory board for enterprise, trade, science, technology and innovation, indicates Irish companies will have 44,500 ICT job openings in the next six years.

As such, hundreds of events are being held across the country this week in an effort to inspire the next generation of engineers.

Regina Moran, president of Engineers Ireland and chief executive of Fujitsu Ireland, will be visiting schools to talk about opportunities for women in science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM).

“The numbers of women working in engineering roles is still far too low. However, there are some positive signals and more women are now choosing engineering and recognise the variety of opportunities available to them in critical areas such as technology, energy and life-sciences,” she said.

“We must find ways of attracting girls and boys to join forces with us and tackle some of the world’s greatest challenges.”

More than 1,000 engineers will also be visiting schools nationwide to help students understand what engineering is all about.

The “I Wish” part of the campaign specifically targets young women, prompting them to think about careers in engineering.

On Thursday, Pixie McKenna from Channel 4’s Embarrassing Bodies will open this series in Cork City Hall with a talk about her own career path.

Regional hubs can be found in CIT, Fota Wildlife Park, Clonakilty, and Mallow where wearable technology will be on show and students can meet and engage with female engineers and entrepreneurs, including female leaders in Google, Facebook, and Twitter.

John Power, director of Engineers Ireland, said:

“A quality inherent to all engineers is that of curiosity, to solve problems and challenge the status quo. With over 70 types of engineering and 20 types of common engineering disciplines there is a something for all interest and talents, from aerospace to agricultural, electrical to environmental, civil to chemical and more.”

Engineers Week runs until February 14. For a full list of events nationwide, go to engineersweek.ie

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