• Question: Do you think there’s a way for more young girls to pursue their dreams in engineering

    Asked by olivia10 to Rach, Priyanka, Olivia, Miriam, Kayleigh, Holly, Emma, Eleanor, Alya, Rhys, Omar, Mark, Craig, Andy on 15 Nov 2017.
    • Photo: Kayleigh Messer

      Kayleigh Messer answered on 15 Nov 2017:


      I hope that any young girl (or boy) who is interested in engineering pursues their dream, and is encouraged by any friends, family and teachers.

      For those that don’t know they want to be engineers yet, hopefully they have someone around them that can help point them in the right direction.

    • Photo: Miriam Ricci

      Miriam Ricci answered on 16 Nov 2017:


      Yes – by being passionate and dedicated to this discipline or any STEM disciplines really! Girls, please just go out there and explore what is available to study, ask other people (like us), talk to your teachers, go to visit science centres and museums, go online to discover what is available to study…
      We girls can do ANYTHING but we need to be aware of gender stereotypes, tacit norms and bias in society, which sometimes are so ingrained and unconsciously embedded that it is difficult to fight them initially, and especially when we are young and less experienced. But we need to persist and be resilient! Good luck and follow your dreams!

    • Photo: Olivia Stodieck

      Olivia Stodieck answered on 16 Nov 2017:


      Completely agree with Kayleigh and Miriam. The best thing is for girls and boys to seek advice and also to try out some practical engineering if they can, maybe at school or in hobby clubs. I recently joined a model aircraft club and I wish I had discovered this hobby much earlier in life! To all dads out there, please don’t just take your sons to the hobby club, sometimes your daughters may also enjoy it 😉 Most people at the club built their own models and then fly them around, doing loops or racing against each other. I agree, that it can be a bit daunting to do things or join clubs where girls are under-represented, but I’ve always found that there are people willing to help and advise, and to welcome you into the team.

    • Photo: Eleanor Sherwen

      Eleanor Sherwen answered on 17 Nov 2017:


      Yes, I really want us to end up in a situation where girls and boys equally get to pursue their dreams in engineering.

      Most Engineers start building their skill-set in this when they’re children. Like most of my male colleagues, as a kid I used to take things apart wanting to see how they work. My Dad and I used to muck about making things in his home workshop.I think remembering that these are opportunities to spark an interest, and that gender shouldn’t be part of it, would probably lead to a more equal take-up of Engineering by both genders.

    • Photo: Emma Grayshon

      Emma Grayshon answered on 20 Nov 2017:


      All the routes are already available to everyone, I think that it is more a cultural problem in that stereotyping still goes on and whether consciously or not, people in a position to influence the career paths of young girls might reinforce those. The industry has come a long way in terms of education, providing information, providing role models but unfortunately sometimes celebrating how much we have moved forward also further ingrains it as a stereotype! That said, we do need to keep showing girls that they can be involved in STEM subjects generally and hope that eventually the message will get through to everyone. Certainly I see so many more girls around the college of building than I did a few years ago so anecdotally it is moving in the right direction!

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