In support of International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) 2018, Boeing UK teamed up with Cranfield University to host ‘Raise the Bar’, an all-day engineering careers showcase for female students.

Held at Cranfield University on 19th June, the event saw leading figures in industry and academia come together to give school girls aged 11 to 16 a taste of careers in engineering, and the opportunity to interact with leading figures from within the industry.

‘Raising the Bar’ formed the centrepiece of a number of activities organised by Boeing as an INWED sponsor, for the second time since the initiative’s conception a year ago. These are dedicated to supporting female engineers and proactively engaging young women with engineering as a career choice.

The interactive day at Cranfield University gave students the opportunity to meet and ask questions of leading industry figures from Boeing, Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group, Aston Martin Red Bull and Anglian Water. The students were shown specialist technical equipment, research kits and hands-on experiments designed to demonstrate all aspects of the engineering sector, including aerospace, motorsport and manufacturing.

One of the day’s sessions saw the students participate in exciting engineering challenges with fellow students using VR technology, robotics, drones and simulators. This helped build positive relationships with fellow students and learn more about the sector.

Sally Hoyle, Boeing’s HR Director for Europe & Israel, said: “Boeing’s sponsorship of International Women in Engineering Day, for the second year running, was driven by an acute awareness that it is vital for the whole engineering sector to engage in making the industry accessible to all. Having interacted with some of the industry’s leading figures during ‘Raising the Bar’, the students now know more about the sector, and are equipped with information on the career paths they can pursue.

“Having diverse employees, business partners and community relationships is essential in order to create advanced aerospace products and services for our customers. More needs to be done to ensure that young women are given opportunities in the engineering sector, and ‘Raising the Bar’ has formed an important part of this effort.  It has proved to be a fantastic showcase for engineering as a career, and we are extremely encouraged by the level of enthusiasm shown by the students during the event.”

Professor Helen Atkinson CBE FREng, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Head of School of Aerospace, Transport Systems and Manufacturing at Cranfield University, said: “Our goal for ‘Raising the Bar’ was to bring our industry to life for young women in a way that will lead some of them to pursue careers in engineering. Giving students tangible experiences of what we do and allowing them to take part in practical activities opens up a whole world beyond the confines of the traditional classroom.

“Participation from our own representatives, as well as those from Boeing and other industry leaders, brought tremendous value to the event, and we hope to be able to hold further such events in the future.”

Notes for editors

About Boeing

Boeing employs more than 2,000 people across the UK at numerous sites, from Glasgow to Gosport, and the company is experiencing solid organic growth.  In 2013 Boeing celebrated 75 years of partnership with the United Kingdom, the Armed Forces, British manufacturing and the air transport industry.  Today the UK remains a critically important market, supplier base and a source of some of the world’s most inventive technology partners.  Boeing’s expenditure with the UK aerospace industry in 2015 was £1.8 billion ($2.65 billion) and the company supports 12,700 jobs in the tier one UK supply chain, in the process enhancing skills, facilitating exports and generating intellectual property.  

About Cranfield University

Cranfield is a specialist postgraduate university that is a global leader for education and transformational research in technology and management.