EDF – the French conglomerate which operates the two Scottish nuclear power stations – has teamed up with the charitable organisation SmartSTEMs, Glasgow Caledonian University and Strathclyde University to offer more than 750 girls across the city the chance to learn about the benefits of STEM careers.
There are six events planned by SmartSTEMs and EDF Energy across the year, which will reach more than 2,500 girls. During each session the girls, aged 10-14, will hear from women who work in STEM about their journeys before they taking part in a series of hands-on workshops.
As part of this programme, EDF Energy commissioned The ‘Jobs of the Future’ research report, which was conducted by The Social Market Foundation. This research shows that even though science and tech jobs will grow twice as fast as other occupations, the number of women working in core STEM industries in Scotland is only one in five –revealing a worrying gender gap.**
This gender gap is UK wide. In 2016, there were an estimated 462,000 women working in science, research, engineering and technology jobs. With gender parity, that number would be 1.2 million – meaning there’s a gender gap of 730,000.
Natasha May, an engineer at EDF Energy said, “Since I became an engineer I’ve seen the number of women entering the industry increase, but there are still too few. Right now, only one in five people working in core STEM industries in Scotland is a woman.
The company supplies 98 per cent of public sector bodies in Scotland after being awarded the country’s largest electricity supply contract by annual volume from April 2013.