A conference promoting careers in engineering to girls was held in Aberdeen last week, with over 40 pupils from across Aberdeen taking part. The annual event was created in 2016, as a partnership between St Margaret’s School for Girls and the University of Aberdeen.
The inaugural Girls in Engineering conference took place in October last year to huge success and was the biggest event of its type to take place in Scotland, with some 90 secondary school pupils from across Aberdeen city and shire, and as far afield as Glasgow and Edinburgh taking part.
The event was aimed at primary-age pupils, and saw P7 pupils from Ferryhill Primary and St Joseph’s Primary in attendance.
The event included presentations and practical workshops designed to challenge and inspire the girls. Activities included ‘The Energy Transition’, where students found out about the energy technologies being used to allow society to move away from fossil fuel power sources while considering the underlying themes of sustainability, energy efficiency and materials. They also constructed a rollercoaster ramp using everyday materials.
In recent years, around 60% of our sixth-year leavers have gone on to study STEM subjects at university and we want to instil the confidence in our pupils to pursue whatever avenue in life is right for them. – Anna Tomlinson, Head, St Margaret’s School for Girls
Former pupil, Abbie Thompson, who is currently studying Engineering at the University of Aberdeen, also delivered a talk to the pupils. Dr Euan Bain, Dr Israel Osofero, James Power and Head of the School of Engineering, Professor Guz, were in attendance, offering support and advice to the pupils.
Dr Israel Osofero, of the University of Aberdeen, says, “Through this event, we demystify the engineering discipline and invite young girls to explore it. Our message is simple – engineering is as much for girls as it is for boys.’
Miss Anna Tomlinson, Head of St Margaret’s School for Girls, says, “Following last year’s successful inaugural Girls in Engineering conference, we are once again excited to collaborate with the university in this way.”
Anna continues, “As a school, we actively seek to break down gender stereotypes. In recent years, around 60% of our sixth-year leavers have gone on to study STEM subjects at university and we want to instil the confidence in our pupils to pursue whatever avenue in life is right for them.”
Anna concludes, “As always, it is a privilege for St Margaret’s to work with the University of Aberdeen, and we look forward to developing our partnership over the coming years.”