7 reasons you should apply for a Women in Science and Engineering scholarship

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is offering a £3000 bursary plus professional mentoring to one undergraduate student and one aspiring engineering apprentice due to begin their course this year.

Here’s why you should apply :

1. You’re a woman – and you’re in demand

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Britain is facing a potential shortage of young engineers. With women currently so absent from the profession, many companies are desperate to reach out to young women and entice them into an engineering career.

Just 14 per cent of engineering students are women and almost half of them don’t take up an engineering or technology-related career. Industry wants to recruit the best talent and it’s well aware that it’s currently missing out on a huge number of highly skilled women.

Of course, you’ll still have to prove your abilities but, in a traditionally male-dominated sector where many new recruits look and think the same, personal differences including gender could actually help you catch the eye of potential employers.

2. You’re enthusiastic about science and technology

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You don’t have to already know loads about engineering. You just need the right attitude, explained Nicci Cook, a senior HR manager at JLR.

’Essentially the type of female we are looking for would be enthusiastic and energetic with a keen interest in science, engineering and technology,’ she said.

’On their CV we’d be looking at whether they had applied for any courses and for the undergrad, what types of subjects they are studying.’

3. You’re interested in a career in engineering – any kind of engineering

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You also don’t have to be set on working in the car industry. You don’t even have to be studying engineering – you could be taking physics or another related degree, for example.

‘We are not actually looking for an engineer but looking for someone who wants to embark in a career in engineering,’ said Cook.

‘Obviously if they do have this interest [in automotive engineering] then great for them as it will make their placement all the more interesting!’

4. You’ll get £1000 a year for three years

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In an age of £9000-a-year tuition fees and higher living costs, any financial help can make a difference. That £3000 could mean not racking up extra debt or not having to take a part-time job while at uni, leaving more time for studying, extra-curricular activities and socialising.

5. You’ll get experience working at one of the UK’s most successful engineering firms

Jaguar F-Type R Couple on Make A Gif Source: JLR

JLR is the UK’s premier carmaker and one of its most successful companies of recent years.

It has grown rapidly in the last five years despite the country’s ongoing economic problems and – unlike other any other car firm – does the vast majority of its research, development and design in Britain.

Getting JLR on your CV will be a major boost to any career – even if you decided not to go into engineering.

6. You’ll be mentored by senior engineers who also happen to be women

Jaguar Land Rover women on Make A Gif Source: JLR

JLR has a much higher proportion of women engineers than most British companies: 11 per cent compared to the 5-to-7 per cent average.

Though this is still low compared to non-engineering companies, it means JLR has far more role models who understand the experience of women entering the profession who can offer help and advice.

‘The support that the Scholarship has given me over the past year has been fantastic,’ said last year’s scholarship winner, Harriet Vickers from Durham University.

‘In addition to the financial aid, having access to a mentor with a wealth of experience in the world of engineering has been invaluable.’

7. You’ll help encourage other girls and women to consider engineering careers

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As well as meeting many successful engineers (including women), you’ll also get the chance to become a role model yourself as an ambassador for the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) organisation.

You’ll be invited to numerous events held by WISE and JLR, giving you the opportunity to help inspire other young women to study science and technology and take up a great career.

Read more about the scholarship here . The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014.