International Women in Engineering Day

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We Must Celebrate Female Engineers to Inspire Future Generations says CIPHE CEO

As part of its continuing efforts to improve and uplift the plumbing and heating (P&H) industry, Kevin Wellman, CEO of the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE), is celebrating the work of female engineers and the influence they can have on the industry’s future.

A government report published earlier this year revealed that around 95% of plumbing engineers are men[1], meaning that the industry is missing out on a larger hiring pool that comes with gender diversity. Kevin believes that one way to help shift the gender imbalance is by sharing stories of women in engineering.

One exemplary woman in the industry is Emma Wray EngTech MCIPHE RP, who was named Installer’s Apprentice of the Month in September 2018 and is now a water regulations inspector for Yorkshire Water. Emma is playing a vital role and helping to inspire the next generation of plumbers and heating engineers. She presents seminars to plumbing students and engineers so they can better understand what water regulations are and why it is so important to comply with them.

Kevin said: “We need to do more to champion gender diversity as it will benefit the industry as a whole and is the right thing to do, both professionally and ethically. Role models like Emma are a critical part of achieving this because, as more girls see themselves represented in the industry, more will recognise it as a viable career path.”

The P&H industry is providing platforms for women, such as the HIP Female Skills competition, which showcases the proficiency and potential of those who are new to the industry. There were also two female recipients of the Worshipful Company of Plumbers £1,000 student bursaries for tools and equipment.

“While we have seen some positive changes to create clear pathways for women and celebrating their success, we need to do more to improve the industry by increasing diversity. Kevin continued. “By working with schools and colleges, we are creating avenues for young people of any gender to explore engineering.”

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[1] Heating and Cooling Installer Study (HaCIS)