Women in engineering will be a key focus area for the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland (BPEQ) with the announcement of its $12,000 partnership with the Queensland University of Technology (QUT).
BPEQ, the state’s engineering supervisory body, will provide funding over two years for QUT’s Women in Engineering (WiE) Alumni Network and the student organisation, Girls in Engineering Making Statements (GEMS).
Earlier this year the Board asked female registered professional engineers for their personal experiences and ideas on ways to promote and support women in engineering. “The major issue emanating from these discussions was the lack of attention on helping keep women in engineering, be it studying or at a mid-point in their career,” said BPEQ chairperson Dawson Wilkie.
He said the partnership would deliver a significant boost to women studying and practising engineering. “Working with QUT, WiE and GEMS we will be able to more actively engage female engineers and support them with the right knowledge, experience and tools to keep them in the profession.”
Deryn Vahl-Meyer, QUT Science and Engineering Faculty’s Assistant Dean for International and Engagement, said the partnership would be mutually beneficial for all parties. “QUT has a strong reputation for producing outstanding engineering graduates, and this partnership demonstrates our combined commitment to encouraging and supporting women in engineering,” she added.
The QUT partnership complements other initiatives BPEQ has in place to support women in engineering, including the introduction of a new category of registration that accommodates career breaks, such as maternity leave, which keeps registration current until the engineer is ready to return to the workforce.