The Bournemouth & Poole College hosted a sell-out event to promote and educate women about career options in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
More than 70 people attended the free ‘Women in STEM CPD’ event which was open to careers advisers, teachers and educational professionals from local schools and organisations across Dorset and Hampshire.
Sponsored by Southampton Solent University for the second year running, the event brought together inspirational speakers and exhibitors from organisations such as Siemens, Curtiss-Wright Avionics & Electronics, Superior Seals and Ultra Electronics Nuclear Control Systems.
Attendees had the opportunity to listen to a number of talks including one from past student, Hannah Lowder, who is now an electronics apprentice at Curtiss-Wright Avionics & Electronics.
Hannah said: ‘‘I joined The College in 2014 and studied Level 3 BTEC Electronic Engineering for two years, and am now on my second year of study working towards my HNC (Higher National Certificate). It has always been my goal to become an electronics engineer ever since I was nine. However, it was very difficult for me to gain support from my school but my parents have always given me the help and encouragement I needed to pursue my dream.
‘‘I have gained so many skills through my course at The College that have really helped me progress in my career. Most importantly I have gained a lot of confidence while learning crucial soldering skills and circuit design, which has allowed me to go straight from the classroom and onto the production shop floor.
‘‘My advice for any women looking to study a STEM related subject is to just go for it because if you enjoy it, it’s worth the hard work. You shouldn’t care what other people think and therefore choose to challenge female stereotypes. I recommend before making any prejudgment on what it is like for women to study STEM subjects, you should do your own research and find out as much as you can about your chosen area of study. STEM subjects can be incorporated into anything, for example there is STEM found within fashion, art, music, design, law and so much more.’’
Diane Grannell, Principal of The Bournemouth & Poole College said: ‘‘The Women in STEM event is something which The College continues to offer to women in the area due to the positive feedback we receive about the support and guidance which is provided.
‘‘The Bournemouth & Poole College is dedicated to promoting equal opportunities for all who are interested in pursuing a career in STEM. Earlier this year we sponsored the STEM Teacher of the Year Award at the Daily Echo School Awards which raised awareness of STEM as a career option for women.’’
If you would like to find out more information about a career in STEM please visit www.thecollege.co.uk/about-us/modernising-college/stem or call 01202 205205.