Excellence in Outreach

This category looks to recognise teams, divisions or companies that have gone the extra mile to inspire women to consider a career in engineering or construction. Whether it is promoting science, technology, engineering and maths in schools and colleges, or mentoring work placements and new joiners or working with youth organisations, this organisation deserves recognition for encouraging women to take part in the engineering and construction sector.

Challenge cup

Amey hosts a series of competitions across the UK to inspire young female students to consider career opportunities in STEM subjects. At Amey we want to leave a positive legacy in the communities in which we operate and Amey’s Challenge Cup is just one way we are looking to improve gender diversity within the engineering industry. The Challenge Cup offers female students the opportunity to participate in an engineering challenge. The event is designed to show just how many roles are available within the technology and engineering sectors, and the students are tasked with planning, budgeting, managing risk, and presenting their ideas to a judging panel. Timed around Women in Engineering Day, the Challenge Cup has grown to explore sustainable construction practices, energy efficiency, renewable energy sources, carbon reduction. By incorporating these concepts, the event also looks to inspire the next generation to prioritise sustainability in their careers.

Mine Environment Management

Mine Environment Management (MEM) is a small, family run environmental engineering and mining consultancy, where the impact on our wider community is an important consideration of our values and ethics. The MEM team is involved in academic outreach, including hosting regular MSc placements: Since 2019 this has included nine MSc students, seven female and two male. MEM visits relevant university departments to give presentations on the variety of environmental engineering projects the company undertakes. MSc students are based in MEM’s Cardiff research office, where they work alongside MEM colleagues. MEM is supported by clients with this endeavour, and our MSc placement students are actively encouraged to present the findings of their research. Alongside MEM’s outreach supporting women in STEM, in early 2024, the company has supported one of the team to become a mentor for the EQUATOR project, working towards equity, diversity and inclusion in Geography, Earth and Environmental Science.

Mott MacDonald Sheffield schools engagement forum

Sheffield office’s Schools Engagement Forum was founded in 2021 to coordinate and improve Mott MacDonald’s attendance at schools’ events locally. Attending more careers events, we realised many students don’t know what Engineers do – we often spoke to female students who had written-off careers in STEM, and who thought the construction industry was only for men because it involved being on site in hi-vis, doing muddy, labour-intensive work. We know engineering is so much more than this, so we designed and delivered a series of fun engineering maths classes at Westfield and Mercia schools, with challenges loosely contextualised to their buildings and surrounding structures. The classes included an introduction to engineering, challenges on retaining walls and piled foundations, and on net zero carbon. Before the lessons, 25% of the girls said STEM jobs were mostly for boys. After the lessons, all agreed that STEM jobs were not limited by gender.

Octavius Infrastructure CECA NextGen Southern Foundations Group

CECA NextGen have developed a story book aimed at children aged 5-8 with the hopes of inspiring young people into a career in STEM and the construction industry. The book highlights Sammi (a gender neutral digger) and a variety of job roles on a construction site, with a diverse range of characters of different genders and ethnicity. It was important to NextGen to show the wide range of possible jobs in the construction industry, including Safety Managers, Environmentalists, Sustainability Managers, and Site Workers. Through focus groups at libraries and Brownie groups we were able to develop the book to be best suited for the age range, and attract both boy and girl readers. The book has been a success - with copies being donated to local schools, and sales of the book reaching as far as South Africa and Australia. We hope this book will inspire the next generation.

On The Tools The women on the tools white paper

In early 2022, UK tradeswomen faced pervasive gender discrimination and substantial pay disparities. On The Tools recognized this injustice, prompting the creation of 'The Women On The Tools White Paper.' This comprehensive report shed light on the challenges faced by tradeswomen, engaging stakeholders across the industry. Distributed digitally and in print, it garnered significant attention, with over 600 downloads and extensive social media reach. The report's impact was tangible; it influenced policy changes, such as the inclusion of sanitary provisions on construction sites. Social media discussions reflected a shift towards positive perceptions of tradeswomen, indicating a growing awareness and support for gender equality in the trades.

AFBE-UK - Making engineering hot

Making Engineering Hot (MEH) programmes use role models to bring engineering careers to life for school children from the ages of 8 to 18 years old. We believe that young people should be empowered to make informed decisions about their future. Our tailor made workshops are a resource for teachers and careers advisers. The time spent with students is used to inform, enthuse and motivate all who attend. We also partner with engineering employers to give young people exposure to engineering careers, through work experience.

Winvic Construction

Winvic’s Social Value (SV) and Human Resources (HR) teams work closely to identify opportunities and deliver initiatives; internal and external stakeholder collaboration means seeing more meaningful results with more people. The whole Winvic team is involved with educating and mentoring, especially a number of female employees who are passionate about promoting construction and acting as inspirational role models. The teams first understanding local needs and tailor activities centred around offering employment and training, volunteering time and resources to educate young people and supporting charities and community groups. Successful repeated activities include interview events and careers, Apprentice and STEM fairs but always striving for new ways to address challenges, the team worked with education providers to deliver new initiatives. The already award-winning, 5-day Winvic Enrichment Programme and a 7-week STEM after school club are providing students with a greater depth of information and helping them to make informed career choices.