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Women's Engineering Society
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Inspiring women as Engineers, Scientists and Technical Leaders
Inspiring women as Engineers, Scientists and Technical Leaders

310 followers
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Have a great day Jan Peters. Lots of pics please.

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Save the date: 23/06/17 start planning your activities for #NWED17 have a look and see how you can get involved

Happy New Year to all our members, volunteers and supporters. Remember save the date 23/06/17 #NWED17

Congratulations to +Jan Peters in recognition of her work for services to Women in Engineering. #NewYearsHonoursList

Jan changed the face of women in science and engineering in the UK, when on a secondment to the DTI she headed the women in science unit from 1999 to 2002. She set about making a collective dataset public for the first time and commissioning reports to fill in gaps in the evidence base. Initiatives helped draw the various women in science community groups together around issues and projects such as the Speaking Out speakers database and training, MentorSET – to support women in technical careers and finally a report defining the need to support women wanting to return to science careers, connecting in particular the WISE Campaign and AWISE with WES and Women in computing. Ultimately this led to the Greenfield Report on Women in Science and the foundation of the UK Resource Centre for women in SET.
Jan has been a champion of women in science and engineering and a WES member since she was a founder member of one of the most successful WES student groups at Southampton University as a PhD student. This extraordinary group, as well as the usual networking events, talks and site visits set up and ran a bursary programme for 10 years and a schools outreach programme in the late 1980’s early 1990s. This led Jan to a BA Media Fellowship on BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour and she became involved in wider efforts to raise awareness of women in science and engineering managing a range of events from the Verena Holmes lecture to debates at the British Science Association Annual event in Southampton. Ultimately making a difference and connecting others with the same passion to create a unified and collective voice for change has been a driving force!
Returning from the secondment to her STEM career and roots, commericalising technology, in her spare time she set about two key areas for WES: inspiring and supporting undergraduates and what she felt was key to making a step change – creating a culture when women could be welcomed and able to be effective professionals in engineering. Jan felt that a big stumbling block in achieving this was a fundamental problem in the availability of safety clothing that was fit for purpose for women. Following an on-line discussion and some initial research her horror at one leading manufacturer’s flippant remark when she asked about the availability of women’s safety kit “we know it’s an issue, but it’s not a priority” she drew together organisations from the WISE Campaign and Women and Manual Trades to draw attention to the issue, under the banner of a purple boot campaign. An online survey drew out the deep dissatisfaction and ignorance around the issue and the group called for ‘PPE that fits for all’. (WES website link of first survey). This resulted in a return to Woman’s Hour, this time as a guest. Finally the results of this awareness raising is seen in 2016 as major employers are investing in designing and supplying PPE designed for women not just smaller versions of men’s. Yet there is still a long way to go. Despite suppliers stating at an event in June on National Women in Engineering Day that they had evidence to suggest that women were being physically harmed by poor fitting boots and gloves, they still argue that it is too expensive to invest in producing higher numbers across all of the safety classifications.
Jan now has moved on to addressing wider diversity issues and continuing to collaborate with UCL Engineering helping them to build inclusion into undergraduate engineering programmes, but is still actively involved in engaging and supporting local initiatives around science, technology, engineering and maths.


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Introducing Yasmin Ali Women's Eng. Society Young Members Board Yasmin Ali

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Introducing Sophie Hutchins Women's Eng. Society Young Members Board Leonardo in the UK

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Introducing Sharon Ross Women's Eng. Society Young Members Board Mars, Incorporated

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Introducing Maeve Higham Women's Eng. Society Young Members Board Instron
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