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Engineering Yorkshire: A woman's world

Engineering in Yorkshire is growing stronger every quarter. But how are young women being encouraged to jump on the bandwagon?

An apprentice from Skipton, named as the winner of the Institution of Engineering and Technology’s (IET) Mary George Prize for Apprentices, is keen to get more women into engineering.

21-year-old Sara Underwood is a higher apprentice at Rolls-Royce in Barnoldswick where she spends time working in multiple teams within the Manufacturing and Engineering departments. The company makes civil aerospace parts - not the posh cars.

She works on process, quality and product improvements to help cut time and costs to the business. Sara'a apprenticeship has given her the opportunity to develop her knowledge academically through her HNC in Manufacturing Engineering, whilst allowing her to put her learning into practice in a corporate environment.  

She considers herself to be a science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) ambassador and is involved in helping to promote apprenticeships to young people. She also works closely with students at Skipton Girls' High School, which is an Engineering Academy.

Currently, just seven per cent of the engineering workforce in the UK is female, a number which Sara is keen to help bring up.

She said: "Engineering is a challenging but rewarding industry to work in."

She spoke to Stray FM about her job, being an apprentice and why more women should consider a career in engineering: