Engineers Week Celebrates Women in Engineering with #GirlDay2017

It’s Engineers Week, and DiscoverE — formerly the National Engineers Week Foundation — is celebrating women in engineering today with Girl Day 2017, a campaign to introduce girls to the world of engineering.

According to a report released this month by Center for Energy Workforce Development, called Attracting and Retaining Women Engineers in the Energy Industry, 15.1 percent of the engineering workforce are women. For energy-related occupations, women make up 12.5 percent of electrical and electronics engineers, 8.3 percent of mechanical engineers and 12.6 percent of civil engineers.

The report said that the National Science Foundation found that among the reasons women do not either pursue or complete engineering degrees are:

  • Lack of female engineering role models
  • Misconceptions of what it is like to be an engineer
  • Lack of confidence

According to the report, encouraging girls to enter engineering education programs, and eventually engineering fields, should begin with career awareness efforts beginning in middle school.

Some tools that can help expose girls to engineering careers include:

  • iCAN Engineering Awareness Program for Girls: Created by Alabama Power, iCAN creates a fun, girls-only environment for learning while sparking an interest in engineering. The program’s primary goal is to empower and encourage young women through focusing on the rewards and benefits of being an engineer.
  • Department of Energy’s Girls of Energy book: Comprised of lesson plans, activities, and an engaging website, Girls of Energy highlights the importance of energy and how it improves the lives of our friends, neighbors and family members.

Follow #GirlDay2017 and #EWeek2017 on Twitter and check out some of these tweets from the energy community:

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Jennifer Delony, analyst for TransmissionHub, started her career as a B2B news editor in the local and long-distance telecommunications industries in the '90s. Jennifer began covering renewable energy issues at the local level in 2005 and covered U.S. and Canadian utility-scale wind energy as editor of North American Windpower magazine from 2006-2009. She also provides analysis for the oil and natural gas sectors as editor of Oilman Magazine.

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