February 06 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

BAE Systems looks to boost women in engineering careers

Boost women in engineering careers

Over 80 young women were invited to take a ‘look behind the scenes’ at BAE Systems.

BAE Systems’ Military Air and Information (MAI) business gave a behind the scenes tour of its Warton facility for a number of young female students, in an attempt to raise interest the number of women looking to take up apprenticeships.

During the tour of the facility where BAE Systems MAI builds the Eurofighter Typhoon jet, which is used by armed forces around the world, the students were able to tryout a Typhoon simulator while also learning about the software and manufacturing technologies that are behind the production of its aircraft.


Less than a tenth of apprenticeship applications are women

The MAI arm of BAE Systems recognised the need to boost the number of women applying for apprenticeships and showcased the opportunities available for those taking up a career in engineering.

“Last year, only eight per cent of engineering apprentice applications we received came from women, so we recognise we need to make girls aware of the career options we have available,” said Andy Bloor, head of early careers at BAE Systems MAI.

He continued by explaining that they were aiming to raise awareness in the area between 15 and 18-year olds. On the evening, the students were introduced to prominent women in the engineering team, notably including Julia Sutcliffe, the head of the engineering team behind its Defence Information and Technology Services business.

“We are fortunate to have some great female role models within our business who can inspire the next generation of young female engineers,” Mr Bloor added.


BAE Systems plans outreach program to boost awareness

The tour was part of a series of events from the careers team of MAI and is part of a wider program of outreach to ensure there is enough interest from students and young people to fill its apprenticeship places. Keeping interest high is a key ingredient to making sure that youngsters are aware of what’s available to them when they start thinking about potential career opportunities.

“We work closely alongside schools and colleges to make sure young people know the opportunities available to them within our business,” said Catherine Lawler, human resources director for Engineering at MAI.

“This work is important to ensure we produce our next generation of employees,” she added.

Claire Payne

Claire Payne is a journalism graduate and News Writer for LSBF. She writes about SMEs, education and careers, entrepreneurship, women in business, and sustainability.

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