The Royal Academy of Engineering has teamed up with Amazon to launch a new bursary scheme to support young female students from low-income backgrounds.
Aiming to promote female participation in computer science and related engineering courses at UK universities, the Amazon Future Engineer programme will consist of 12 awards worth £5,000 a year for up to four years. It will be available to students progressing from A level or technical education courses to university for the 2021/22 academic year.
“The Academy and Amazon share an ambition to inspire and support young people to become the next generation of engineers, and I welcome the opportunity to work together in encouraging more women and girls from all backgrounds to take up careers in engineering and computing,” said Dr Hayaatun Sillem, chief executive of the RAEng.
“We need a greater diversity of views and experiences working within these professions if we are to come up with effective solutions to the many challenges that society faces. At the current rate of progress, to achieve the same number of women as men on degree courses for these subjects would take another 74 years. We simply cannot afford to wait that long.”
Amazon Future Engineer bursaries are open to students enrolling in courses such as electrical and electronic engineering, computer science, artificial intelligence and software engineering in the UK. The bursaries will focus on areas of the UK that have been identified as social mobility cold spots—places in the country where opportunities and outcomes for young people need improving. Awardees will be invited to attend annual networking and training weekends and will have access to a community forum providing support from the Royal Academy of Engineering and Amazon. They will also receive news of available internships, as well as mentoring and funding to help them progress from university into engineering and computing careers.
“Our new bursary scheme with the Royal Academy of Engineering will help more women become the innovation leaders of the UK,” said John Boumphrey, UK country manager, Amazon.
“More needs to be done to encourage women to enter these fields and break down barriers that students face. The Amazon Future Engineer bursary scheme is just one of the ways that we are helping to increase the representation of women in the UK innovation economy and exciting careers in computer science.”
Applications are open until June 14. Additional details on how to apply for the bursary scheme can be found here.