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23 Jun 2016

British Steel backs drive to get more women to join engineering industry

British Steel is staging a special event to encourage more women to join the industry.

National Women in Engineering Day takes place on Thursday June 23 and students from local colleges have been invited to a celebration at the town's steelworks.

The event is designed to raise the profile of women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) careers  and encourage more females to consider joining these employment  paths.

Among those attending will be a number of women British Steel employees who are in STEM careers, including electrical apprentice Bethany Smith.

Explaining why she wanted to become an electrician, first year apprentice Bethany said: "As my interests included maths, science and practical lessons at school, I knew a good career which involved my strengths would be to become an electrician. Therefore, I went for a week’s work experience at Mechanical Workshops on site.

“I did a range of both mechanical and electrical work and then decided I would apply for an apprenticeship, as I enjoyed the work experience. Over the three years, I will learn both practical and theory skills from experienced crafts workers who have over 20 years of experience in a wide array of industries, which will help me to develop my future career. I am doing all this whilst getting paid and getting good qualifications.

“My job includes a mixture of practical work in a workshop (similar to one in industry), where we complete tasks and assessments that we write reports on and a range of theory lessons (including electrical power, panel wiring and instrumentation) in the classrooms that we get tested on throughout the year. This prepares you to work on site in our second year onwards.

"I would advise women to not be put off by the fact that engineering is seen as a male environment, as women have equally the same opportunities as men.”

Students from British Steel's partner colleges,  John Leggott College and Humber University Technical College, have been invited to the event along with female employees from British Steel.

The celebration will include speeches by female employees in STEM careers at British Steel. They will discuss their careers and share their experiences with the students to help inform them about the career opportunities that are available across STEM.

There are a wide range of STEM roles available within British Steel, including: Mechanical & Electrical Engineers, Technologists, Chemists, Process Safety Specialists, Operations Managers, Environmental Engineers, Design Technicians and Business Analysts.

Paul Martin, British Steel's Human Resources Director, said it is important more women become engineers.

He said: "We have some incredibly talented female engineers at British Steel and we want to help raise their profile.

“We hope this event will not only celebrate their achievements but inspire more women to take up engineering as a profession, and hopefully join our business in the future.

“The steel industry is an incredible business to work in, whether you are male or female. It is a modern, hi-tech industry with a diverse range of jobs and opportunities and we offer great career paths to anyone wishing to join British Steel.

“We offer apprenticeships, apprenticeships with a degree, roles for graduates and undergraduates. You can even come to British Steel for work experience to see what roles are most suitable for you."

Are you interested in a career in Science, Technology, Engineering or Maths at British Steel? Click here for more information.