Engineering cleans up act to attract women to sector

Engineering companies are launching
a recruitment drive to attract women to the sector at the National Engineering
Recruitment Exhibition this month.

Exhibitor’s in
Birmingham will try to clean up the sector’s "dirty" image – a key
reason why women have been reluctant to become engineers.

Emma Lewis, HR adviser
for Oxford Instruments, said, "The image of the engineering industry has
been ‘downgraded’ over time. Reasons for this vary, but include stereotypical
perceptions of engineering as dull.

offers a huge range of different and fascinating fields from aeronautics to
ocean technology."

The engineering firm
currently employs only four female engineers out of a total of 80.

"We are eager to
employ more female engineers and this event gives us an ideal opportunity to
meet with a wide range of female recruits," said Lewis.

A total of 333,000
women work in the engineering industry in the UK – equivalent to 20 per cent of
the workforce, according to figures released by the Engineering Employers’
Federation in 2001.

Oxford Instruments is
one of 50 exhibitors at NER that include Vodafone, The Royal Navy, BAE systems
and Honda.

The exhibition will be
held on 27-28 April 2001 at Birmingham NEC and 11-12 May 2001 at Wembley

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