Engineering Needs Diverse Heroes to Solve Tomorrow’s Problems
BURNABY, British Columbia, June 23, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — June 23 is International Women in Engineering Day – a global campaign that aims to raise the profile of women in engineering and focus attention on the career opportunities available to young women in this exciting industry.
It’s a day to celebrate progress and innovation, but it’s also a day to bring attention to the challenge we continue to face: women are still greatly under-represented in engineering. In fact, today, just 13% of BC engineers are women.
Engineers and Geoscientists BC, the regulator for these two professions in BC, is putting a spotlight on the need for gender parity in engineering through an inspiring campaign, in partnership with UBC’s Geering Up school program, that celebrates four local engineering heroes – women who identify problems and dare to be part of the solution.
“Diversity in engineering is critical,” said Engineers and Geoscientists BC’s CEO, Heidi Yang, P.Eng. “Research has shown us that diverse organizations and teams lead to greater innovation and better outcomes. Our hope is that by showcasing women engineers doing incredible work, we can inspire a sense of possibility and belonging, and help young women see themselves as the engineers of the future.”
Colleen O’Toole, P.Eng., one of the engineering heroes participating in the campaign, works with small Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities to solve water, sewage, and drainage infrastructure problems. “By intentionally building a safe and inclusive engineering profession that reflects the full diversity of the communities that we serve, we increase the relevance, resilience, and innovation of the solutions we develop,” she said.
The other featured heroes perform equally critical work – including optimizing processing plants to increase reliability, assessing contaminated sites, and developing 3D models of the ocean floor to help ships navigate safely – work that keeps the public safe, but often goes unnoticed.
As part of its ongoing commitment to diversity in engineering, Engineers and Geoscientists BC is working towards a goal of 30 by 30 – having 30% of newly-licensed engineers be women by 2030. Today, that number stands at 19% in BC. Through its diversity programs and initiatives, such as school presentations and mentoring, Engineers and Geoscientists BC is confident that this goal can be reached.
Meet Engineers and Geoscientists BC’s engineering heroes at: https://www.egbc.ca/INWED.
For more information on International Women in Engineering Day, visit: https://www.inwed.org.uk/.
About Engineers and Geoscientists BC
Engineers and Geoscientists British Columbia is the regulatory and licensing body for the engineering and geoscience professions in BC. To protect the public, we maintain robust standards for entry to the professions, and comprehensive regulatory tools to support engineers and geoscientists in meeting professional and ethical obligations.
Director, Communications and Stakeholder Engagement
Engineers and Geoscientists BC