Sir Charles Kao UTC celebrates International Women in Engineering Day


Sir Charles Kao UTC celebrated International Women in Engineering Day on Friday 23 June, with a day of practical activities to encourage more women to take up engineering careers. Alongside students from Burnt Mill Academy, Forest Hall School and Epping St John’s, a group of Year 10 girls from Sir Charles Kao UTC in Harlow worked on designing a device to extend our reach. The project allowed students to explore medical technology, one of Sir Charles Kao UTC’s technical specialisms.

The day began with inspiring presentations from three female engineers from the UTC’s employer partners, Laura Nicolas and Stacey Murphy from Raytheon and Dee Tress from GlaxoSmithKline, who explained how they entered their fields and what they did in their roles.

International Women in Engineering Day (INWED), founded by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES) in 2014, celebrates the achievements of women in engineering. Currently, women make up only 9% of the engineering workforce. It is celebrated every year on 23 June. The students then investigated current products, including robotic arms and hand grabbers, to explore the best properties and materials. Following their investigations, they then worked in small groups to design a device. At the end of the day, the students presented their findings and Jessica Rayif-Pearson from Sir Charles Kao UTC was chosen as the winner, for her product to support engineers with completing works in hard to reach places.

Assistant Principal David Ramsey said:

We were really impressed by the interest and aptitude of the students, both from Sir Charles Kao UTC, and from visiting schools, in the field of engineering and we hope to see a number of the girls who participated studying engineering or product design in our sixth form in the coming years.

Thank you to Laura, Stacey and Dee for their support on the day and in inspiring the students to look further into engineering careers.

For more information on Sir Charles Kao UTC, please visit:

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