More inspiration into engineering!

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UWE engineering students, alumni and staff have recorded home-videos to inspire children into engineering. This is the second post sharing some of these videos – you can catch up on two Aerospace Engineering students enthusiasm for engineering in the first post.

Here we’re sharing the insight and enthusiasm of two amazing female engineers:

  • UWE alumni – Krystina Pearson-Rampeearee
  • UWE lecturer and PhD researcher – Maryam Lamere

Krystina Pearson-Rampeearee

Krystina gives a little insight into her job at BAE Systems, alongside sharing some top tips, how she’s overcome challenges and why she’s excited for the future of engineering.

Maryam Lamere

Maryam loves engineering and speaks a little about her research into pee-powered electricity. Most of all, she emphasises that a good engineer never gives up!

Are you a UWE engineering student, alumni or staff and have a story you’d like to share? Please get in touch with me at louisa.cockbill@uwe.ac.uk to get your own home-video featured and shared to inspire the next generation of engineers!

Inspired into Engineering!

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UWE engineering students, alumni and staff have recorded home-videos to inspire children into engineering. We’ll be sharing some of these videos in the next couple of weeks, and first up are two Aerospace Engineering students – Hannah and Timothy – who share their enthusiasm for the profession as well as what first sparked their interest in engineering.

Hannah Gray

Hannah just graduated (2020) with a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from UWE Bristol and explains for a young audience what engineering is and how she got into it. She gives insight into how creativity lends itself to designing solutions to problems – the essence of engineering! Listen to find out why Hannah thinks anyone can be an engineer and how she thinks engineers can help tackle the climate crisis.

Timothy Hampl

Inspired by space flight as a child, Tim shares how he considered becoming a pilot but decided that being an engineer gave him scope to do something even cooler – contribute to the evolution of flight technology! He explains how he’s using computers to design and test out aircraft components and advises kids to pursue what they love. 

Are you a UWE engineering student, alumni or staff and have a story you’d like to share? Please get in touch with me at louisa.cockbill@uwe.ac.uk to get your own home-video featured and shared to inspire the next generation of engineers!

International Women In Engineering Day

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International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) is tomorrow – 23rd July – and is an opportunity to raise the profile of women in engineering and focus attention on the amazing career opportunities available to girls in this exciting industry.

The theme for this year’s INWED is “Shape the World”, and there are lots of ways you can take part…

Or read about some of EDM’s inspirational women.

On 10th June women in UWE’s Engineering, Design and Mathematics department took part in celebrating the million women now working in STEM industries in the UK. They shared photos and stories to inspire other women in engineering. Read more here.

Six UWE engineers who are proud to be #1ofthemillion women in STEM in the UK

Other INWED events can be found here: http://www.inwed.org.uk/activities.html

Sign up to mentor girls into STEM – online!

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Cajigo is a mobile learning platform that empowers girls and women to reach their full potential through focused mentoring and support. And they’re on the lookout for new mentors!

Read on to find out more about the platform and how you could get involved…

Addressing the Gender Imbalance

In STEM industries female representation remains under 20% worldwide, and with many schools lacking girls taking STEM subjects at A level, this gender imbalance shows no sign of changing soon. With predictions that the next decade will see 80% of jobs requiring STEM skills, new solutions are badly needed to encourage women into STEM.

Cajigo School’s Programme works with education and businesses to signpost STEM industry careers to girls early on. This can have a huge positive effect on girls – inspiring, motivating and empowering them with the belief that they can reach their highest potential in these fields.

Cajigo aims to demystify STEM and digital careers to capture young minds, connecting careers to passions to get young girls excited about working within STEM and digital fields.

“Cajigo is a practical way, not only to increase diversity but also to make it a strategic imperative within the business”

Jacqueline de Rojas CBE, President techUK, Chair of Digital Leaders

Online Mentoring

During the current lockdown, many girls would benefit from developing STEM skills whilst at home. And with evidence suggesting those from disadvantaged backgrounds and underrepresented groups are likely to be left behind during this time, Cajigo is running as an online solution to keep these populations engaged and motivated in STEM.

The Cajigo Schools programme mentors and supports girls (aged 13 years and upwards) on option choices and their career development using a blended learning approach. This involves a 3-hour workshop, in addition to online learning through Cajigo (an App), and guidance and support from role models and industry mentors.

And that’s where you could come in!

Mentoring gives students access to visible and relatable female role models who help to inspire, motivate and signpost careers.

Cajigo also offers support to women in the workplace, career changers, returners and University students.

If you are keen to offer support in mentoring the next generation of female engineers and digital technologists, please contact Rav Bumbra, who’ll talk you through the process – team@cajigo.com

Cajigo is the social learning and development arm of Structur3dpeople, a company that helps organisations attract and retain diverse talent and focuses on supporting more women into STEM, digital and leadership careers.

Sharing the faces of women in STEM

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We’re joining Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) to celebrate the recently reached milestone – 1 million women working in core STEM in the UK.

Today, WISE are running their 1 of the Million Campaign – sharing photos of women in STEM to put a personal face to those million.

And in EDM we’re taking part too! Take a look at the WISE campaign’s twitter feed to spot some of our fabulous women.

It’s all about showcasing that STEM is for everyone – so why not share your photo today?

You just have to take a selfie with a placard saying what you do at UWE, or even why you are passionate about STEM – then upload your photo on the WISE webpage (and send me a copy – engineeringourfuture@uwe.ac.uk)

Insight into EDM’s inspirational women

EDM women are pictured above taking part in WISE’s 1 of the million campaign and you can read about some of their career stories below…

Senior Lecturer in Statistics, Narges Dailami tells her story, “I am a senior lecturer in statistics at EDM UWE. I have always loved maths and wanted to pursue a career in it from a young age. I was 18 when I arrived from Persia but I had to spend my time learning English in order to achieve this dream in the UK. After gaining a First in Maths from Sheffield University my passion grew and I completed a Masters in Probability and Statistics then went on to complete my PhD in statistics. I am proud of what I have achieved and although my journey was difficult at times, no amount of adversity or challenges was going to stop me achieving what I set out to do at 18.” 
Read about why Head of EDM, Lisa Brodie, recommends engineering to young people.
Or find out how Maryam Lamere, PhD student and Associate Lecturer, finds "being different a strength in engineering".

Sign up to inspire or be inspired at an online career showcase

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The closure of schools, colleges & universities combined with self-isolation, cancellation of career fairs and face to face employer engagements is putting even more pressure on young people who are preparing to transition from education into the world of work.

But there’s a digital solution – careers fairs are moving online!

LikeToBe (a digital platform that introduces students to professional networking and career opportunities) is running online career showcases as part of their Transformational Inspirational Career Talks.

Their Career Showcase South West is on 22nd & 23rd June 2020.

Over two days, LikeToBe will host a scheduled series of insightful career talks & presentations by employers and their ambassadors. And in addition to the talks & presentations, the speakers will be available online to answer questions and offer career guidance and advice via the forums.

The focus for both days will be on STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts Mathematics) careers, with particular emphasis on:

  • Pandemic issues affecting careers – 22nd June 10am – 3pm – “Pandemic Proof” – Protect Your Employability Post Pandemic (including discussion about how the pandemic might change the world of work in various sectors and how students can protect their employability)
  • Women in Engineering – 23rd June 10am – 3pm – The World of Engineering Wants You!

Student’s sign up!

The online event will be accessible by any student, anywhere and at any time because the content will remain on the LikeToBe platform for up to 12 months. So unlike the traditional career fairs of past, this event will leave a legacy long after the event has taken place.

Students can pre-register for the careers fair by signing up to LikeToBe, in order to:

  • Understand some of the career possibilities open to them in the world of STEAM
  • Hear from a number of leading employers about their business and possible roles
  • Get the chance to raise questions and clarify answers in near real time or later

For a preview of the types of talks that can be expected at the online careers fair, take a look at this recent talk by Patricia Sanchez from Rolls Royce about Transport Travel and Our Planet.

Speaker’s sign up!

LikeToBe are looking for speakers from businesses, universities and other organisations to get involved. If you’d like to offer students valuable insight and real life information on career options and advice, then here’s your chance!

Speakers are asked to create a short video about their career, complete a profile page and be available to answer questions on the career fair days. For more details please contact Antony Jinman (Founder and CEO) at antony@liketobe.org or Anouk Spelt at Anouk@liketobe.org.

Students tackle real-world problems

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Motivated by UWE’s 2020 strategy to educate for sustainable development, for the past three years EDM has partnered with Engineers without borders (EWB)-UK to deliver project based learning activities that develop a sense of global responsibility in students.

Project weeks have been used to focus students’ design skills on different real-world problems. And for the second Project Week of the 19/20 academic year, Level 1 students were given the challenge of finding engineering solutions to tackle one of the following problem areas in Johannesburg, South Africa: Transport, Energy, Water, Digital, Sanitation, Housing, Waste and Built Environment.

Inspiring speakers, Navjot Sawhney (Senior Cost Engineer at Jaguar Land Rover and founder of the Washing Machine Project) and Adam Root (Founder of Inheriting Earth, an award wining entrepreneur with a mechanical engineering background), helped to engage over 300 students in the projects.

Projects were presented via posters, votes taken and prizes awarded. Students also had the choice to compete against other universities in the EWB Engineering for People Design Challenge.

EDM’s foundation challenge

Foundation level students also took part in projects, with the Engineering and Mathematics, Rocket and Robot Challenge a popular success.

Students (helped by EDM staff) enjoyed a busy and industrious week in the ECC building, programming robots and calculating the variables needed (the beginning of rocket science)  to control projectiles launched  in a competition to meet set targets. The winning team was Zeta, George Price, Jack O’Neill, Tomas Sudenis, Matthew Payne and Ryan Beazer.

Project success!

Overall the project weeks have received lots of positive feedback from staff, students and external speakers. But its not just an internal success, there’s also lots of external interest in what EDM is doing, with several other universities visiting to observe EDM’s project based learning delivery.

Celebrating Women in STEM!

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Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) have worked hard over the years to transform the face of the workforce, and this June we are joining them to celebrate their recently reached milestone – 1 million women working in core STEM in the UK.

EDM supports gender equality in STEM and recognises the vital contribution women are making, so we’re partnering with WISE, and other STEM organisations in the UK, to help put a personal face to the million.

As part of this 1 of the Million Campaign, we’ll be sharing photos and some stories of the women making a difference in EDM at UWE Bristol. All helping to showcase that STEM is for everyone – hopefully encouraging more girls into STEM!

So whether you’re a women in STEM or a champion of gender balance across sectors, take part in WISE’s #1ofTheMillion day on Twitter. You just have to take a selfie with a placard saying what you do at UWE, or even why you are passionate about STEM – then upload your photo on the WISE webpage and they’ll share it on the WISE Twitter account on June 10th.

You can find out more about getting involved by taking a look at the 1 of the Million Campaign Pack (which includes the official blank campaign placard).

In this time of uncertainty, it’s important that we don’t lose sight of one thing that is certain – women strengthen our STEM workforce! So to kick us off early – here are just two of EDM’s fabulous 1 of the million women:

EDM, a “nurturing familial environment”

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Picture features (L-R) April Coombes (UWE), Professor Melvyn Smith (UWE), Dr Gytis Bernotas (UWE), Dr Mark Hansen (UWE), Geraint Jones (Innovate UK), James Theobald (Agsenze) at the Agri-EPI Centre in Shepton Mallet. (Originally published here)

Senior Research Fellow in EDM’s Machine Vision group, Mark Hansen, researches machine learning and computer vision, with a particular focus recently on agritech applications. This has included successfully moving many technologies into industry, from dairy herd monitors, to facial and emotional recognition in pigs, to counting and sizing potatoes as they come out the ground. (Read this blog post on the latest developments from the Machine Vision Team).

Mark worked as a software engineer in industry for 10 years, before coming to the BRL in 2008 for his PhD. And he’s never looked back.

“There’s a lot of freedom and I direct a lot of my own work. I never feel micro-managed or that someone is breathing down by neck at any time. I will get the work done and my line manager knows that. 

I feel very trusted, it’s a nurturing familial type of environment to work in.” 

When Mark’s children were much younger, he made use of the nursery on campus and adaptable working hours to schedule work around his childcare responsibilities. 

“There’s flexibility if I need it for my family. I have two children, 10 and 7, and my wife is a successful solicitor, so she works a lot.” 

Crisis in the family 

Mark highlights a particular occasion when UWE’s flexibility was invaluable for his family: 

“My wife had just left to go to court in London, when my eldest fell on the youngest, embedding his tooth into his forehead.” 

Although initially stitched up okay, Mark’s son soon developed a very serious infection. He was hospitalised on intravenous antibiotics, and there was a real fear he might develop sepsis. 

“As opposed to many other jobs I’ve had in the past, I was just able to tell my line manager I’m not going to be in for…I don’t know for how long. And I knew I didn’t have to worry about work at all.”  

Mark’s son made a full recovery, and the experience has given Mark an acute appreciation for EDM’s staff support, “it would be hard to get that level and trust and balance anywhere else.” 

The friendly, international culture 

Alongside EDM’s culture of supporting family life, Mark points to the great collegial and collaborative working culture within the department, which drives its success. 

“I get to work with people who are all really passionate about what they do and have a very wide range of skills to call on.” 

Mark enjoys the international diversity and friendly atmosphere within the department, fondly remembering an international lunch where 40 different dishes were authentically prepared, “I think it was probably the best meal I’ve ever eaten!” 

Manufacturing visors for the NHS

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Technicians from EDM have been manufacturing protective visors for NHS workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

Alongside his colleagues, Gareth Griffiths (pictured above), Senior Engineering Manager at the Robotics Innovation Facility (RIFBristol) within the Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL), has been using laser cutting technology to produce the visors.

An initial batch of 200 was manufactured for staff working at the Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership (AWP) NHS Trust. The team from RIFBristol, the SABRE Programme and the wider BRL, now plan to expand production with the support of 3D printing facilities and technicians across three UWE faculties.

For more information take a look at the UWE press release or LinkedIn post.