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Calls to increase number of women working in engineering sector

A snapshot on women working in the engineering sector shows females still face barriers in pursuing a career in engineering, prompting calls to inspire further change in the profession.

With the theme for tomorrow’s International Women’s Day “Inspiring Change”, chair of Engineers Australia’s Women in Engineering Committee, Nee Nee Ong, says encouraging more females to join the sector would centre around creating greater awareness.

A recent survey found women make up only 11.2 per cent of the engineering labour force and shows females experience higher unemployment.

1000 women graduated in engineering in 2011, compared to 5598 men, and females’ starting salaries are more than $3000 less than their male counterparts.

Ong says the gender imbalance in the engineering sector means a significant part of the sector’s highly skilled workforce is being underutilised and says this will affect the nation’s economic, productivity and growth agenda.

She says her committee will tackle the status quo by creating change through community engagement activities, school programs, industry workshops and by increasing the visibility of female engineers.

“Engineers Australia is keen to work with government and employer groups to ensure women are better represented in the workforce and we’re committed to increasing the number of female engineering graduates leaving our universities and TAFEs”, Ong said.

If you know a woman doing achieving great things in the engineering sector, nominate her for the 2014 Women in Industry Awards:


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