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Gloucestershire Business News

Renishaw inspires with all-female work experience week

Gloucestershire-based Renishaw held its first ever all-female virtual work experience week last month.

The global engineering technologies company held the week to encourage more female secondary school students to consider a career in engineering.

Renishaw is encouraging more diversity in the engineering industry by providing empowering opportunities for women in the workplace and those entering the industry. The work experience week aimed to inspire girls to see roles in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as viable and achievable career options.

During the all-female work experience week, the girls worked as teams on a project-based task to give them an insight into the various roles they could pursue in an engineering career. Each group of five girls was presented with an engineering challenge and asked to design a solution using computer aided design (CAD) software and cardboard prototypes. The groups were mentored virtually by a number of Renishaw employees in different roles, such as project managers, design engineers and graduate engineers. The girls also attended skills sessions, where they learnt presentation skills, CAD tips and tricks, and CV writing skills.

A student said: "This work experience opportunity has been very helpful in teaching me about the opportunities available in the engineering industry and about Renishaw as a company. What I have learnt will help me make more informed decisions about my future education and career."

Sarah Lewis, education tutor and technician at Renishaw, said: "The all-female week has given the girls the opportunity to build their confidence and learn more about working in the engineering industry, without possibly feeling intimidated by working on their projects with large numbers of male students.

"Although this model does not fully replicate the real engineering world, we hope the girls saw how they could realise their potential and the rewarding nature of a future career in engineering."

Renishaw received over 250 applications for its work experience weeks, with a third from female students, showing a growing interest in STEM careers from young women. Girls were given the choice of the all-female week or the mixed weeks that will all take place during the school holidays.

Renishaw has been running its structured group-based work experience weeks for seven years as part of its wider education outreach schemes.

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