International Women in Engineering Day

NWED is an annual festival developed and coordinated by the Women’s Engineering Society to celebrate the achievements of women in engineering and inspire younger generations to train as engineers. Here you can see how we have celebrated the festival over the past five years.

International Women in Engineering Day 2018

The UK has a skills gap in engineering, with 124,000 needed each year but only around half this number appointed. Doubling the current percentage of women in the sector would add 96,000 people to the workforce.

Diverse teams also reflect the broader society that engineering serves and provide different ways of approaching solutions. "Diversity is important in all fields so that all views are considered and contribute to the creation of new products and methods, addressing diverse needs. Engineering is not an exception", says Research Lecturer Dr Alejandra Gonzalez-Beltran.

To mark the occasion there was a poster display profiling some of the Department’s female engineers in the Thom Building reception area in the week leading up to INWED, plus a lunch reception for all staff and students on Friday 22 June, with a short talk by Civil Engineering research assistant Christelle Abadie. Female engineers in the department are involved in diverse fields including biomedical engineering, energy and sustainability, aerospace engineering, robotics and AI, civil and information engineering and machine learning. See more.

Research shows that most UK girls under 11 are attracted to science and maths subjects, but interest drops sharply at age 16-17 [1]. Having more female role models has been found to be one of the significant drivers impacting girls' interest in STEM subjects going forward. Biomedical engineer Dr Heba Sailem says, "Engineering is one of the most creative and diverse professions where young women can have a lot of impact. Additionally, I think it is the perfect time to become an engineer. There is a lot of support for women who would like to pursue a career in engineering especially at Oxford".

[1] Microsoft and LSE Report, 2017

International Women in Engineering Day 2017

An inspiring afternoon on Wed June 14th spent with Year 9 female students across Oxfordshire and female engineers from the Department of Engineering Science. The school students completed workshops:

    1. "People Like Me", a questionnaire designed to link their strongest skills & traits with a STEM career
    2. A workshop on building the structure of a wind turbine. They were able to connect their structures to mini-propellors and motors and test them by placing their wind turbines in front of a fan. The wind turbines were connected to a voltage multimeter to see how much electricity was generated.

These workshops were followed by a high tea event at St John's College, Oxford (including a tour given by College undergrad Engineering + Physics students), where the school students interacted with female engineers studying/researching at the University. They were able to ask questions on engineering careers and the A-level subjects required. The keynote speech was given by Prof. Alison Noble from the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Oxford - a motivating, eye-opening speech on the vital role of engineers in society, the challenging problems in the world that can't be solved without engineers, and her own journey of being a successful engineer.

For more information visit our recent news article.

National Women in Engineering Day 2016

This year's video features interviews with a diverse cross-section of female engineers at Oxford trying to change the pre-conceived notions of engineering. They discuss its importance to our everyday lives and the types of skills required for an engineering career. This contributes to our efforts to inspire the next generation of female engineers. Please watch and share!


Department of Engineering Science

Karen Carey, Media Producer
Peter Robinson, Manager EMS and Oxford on iTunesU

Lucy Townsend, HR Manager
Dr. Joanna Rhodes, Head of Finance and Administration

Video conceptualisation: Dr Priyanka Dhopade

Elizabeth Watson
Prof. Sina Ober-Blöbaum
Prof. Eleanor Stride
Dr. Priyanka Dhopade
Ana Castro-Castellon

Women's Engineering Society (WES)


National Women in Engineering Day 2015

National Women in Engineering Day was set up by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES) to celebrate its 95th anniversary last year. On 23 June 2015 WES wants to focus attention on the great opportunities for women in engineering, at a time when it has never been more important to address the engineering skills shortage. By encouraging girls into engineering careers we will not only be increasing diversity and inclusion – a business imperative – but enabling us to fill the substantial future job opportunities that have been predicted in this sector.

The Women in Engineering network group at Oxford decided to contribute to NWED this year by compiling
a video discussing why they were inspired to study engineering and why they enjoy it, in order to help change the perception of this career choice in the public.


National Women in Engineering Day 2014


National Women in Engineering Day was set up by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES) to celebrate its 95th anniversary. It took place on 23 June 2014. The aim was to celebrate the work that women do in engineering, and to showcase the great engineering careers that are available for girls.

Below is a video that was prepared by the Department for National Women in Engineering Day 2014.

National Women in Engineering Day - 23rd June 2014 from Engineering Science Oxford on Vimeo

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You can visit the National Women in Engineering Day website here