Image: Collins Aerospace

Collins Aerospace in Kilkeel, Northern Ireland, is encouraging more female students to pursue a career in engineering with the return of its annual ‘Introduce a Girl to Engineering’ event.

The company welcomed over 25 female students from four local schools to its facility late last month for the annual event, which is now in its 22nd year. During the event, members of the company’s dedicated STEM council showcased the many opportunities and career pathways that are available by choosing Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) related subjects.

In person and virtual events took place at 45 Collins Aerospace sites across the world, with over 2,800 young females aged between six and 18 attending, and 800+ employees involved in the planning and execution of the events globally.

The event at the Kilkeel facility saw students from Assumption Grammar School, Ballynahinch; Newbridge Integrated College, Loughbrickland; Our Lady’s Grammar School, Newry and St Louis Grammar School in Kilkeel come together for a busy activity-led morning. The students had the opportunity to learn about the manufacturing of aircraft seating through a tour of the facility, several presentations and hands-on STEM activities.

With over 800 employees at the Kilkeel facility, many of whom are women in leadership and key engineering roles, the students heard first-hand from some of the Collins team who told their own stories of being inspired to study engineering and how they’ve progressed in and pursued their own successful careers.

‘Introduce a Girl to Engineering’

Alan Henning, managing director of Collins Aerospace in Kilkeel said: “We were delighted to host the ‘Introduce a Girl to Engineering’ event once again. We’re very proud that it has become such an important event not only for us, but also for the local schools. It’s imperative to maintain the interest of females in STEM related subjects, as it tends to fall off once they enter secondary school. Through this event, we can highlight the many career pathways that are available with STEM subjects and therefore encourage the next generation of female engineers.“

Karen Andersson, Head of Technology and Design at Assumption Grammar School, Ballynahinch spoke about the event said: “This was an excellent opportunity for our students to experience just what a career in engineering within the aerospace sector entails. I’d like to thank all the staff at Collins Aerospace for facilitating and providing such an enjoyable and interesting day for us. By taking the time to share their knowledge with us, I’m sure they will have encouraged our students to consider the wide range of career options open to them.”

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