Engineering is the preferred occupation for one in six boys but only 1% of girls, a Mori survey commissioned by the Engineering and Marine Training Authority has found.
The Emta survey shows that 51% of girls aged 11 12 knew ‘not very much’ about engineering, with 33% knowing ‘nothing at all’. Half those surveyed thought engineering ‘boring’; 61% thought it meant a dirty working environment. Only 2% were ‘very likely’ and 3% ‘fairly likely’ to consider it as a career.
Spurred by these results, the Emta has started a company visit initiative called Incite targeted at girls in their final year of junior school. The scheme, involving 50 100 schools, aims to help girls learn about the profession through visits to local engineering firms.
Rolls-Royce was the first member company to back the project. Endorsing the campaign, Dr Julia King, managing director of Rolls-Royce Fan Systems, said: ‘Working with girls who have already made their A-level choices means many are missing out on the opportunity to consider engineering. It is very important to influence their choices at an earlier stage.’