Female engineering students also really like the idea because they get to grow a network of their female engineering peers from around the country and that’s really powerful. MARITA CHENG.
educated about the benefits of engineering and the reach of the program is quickly expanding, now having over 20 chapters in six countries around the world. Cheng says demand for Robogals’ programs is very high – as is the enthusiasm. “I get heaps of emails every day from universities all around the world who want to setup this program. I think the universities really like the idea because this is an issue they’re really concerned about. It is true that we have a huge lack of engineers in Australia,” she says. “Female engineering students also really like the idea because they get to grow a network of their female engineering peers from around the country and that’s really powerful. The typical Robogals volunteer is very interested in having more females in the industry because they experience every day that there aren’t many females in engineering. “In terms of industry, we’ve had a very positive response to
Robogals so far. Industry likes the idea of us reaching out to young girls and tackling the issue from as early as possible. They also like that we have the attachment to universities for recruitment purposes,” says Cheng. To attract more women into engineering careers, Cheng suggests resource companies talk to female employees about what they desire in terms of career, lifestyle and family goals. “It all comes out of conversation,” says Cheng. “Companies need to be flexible in that regard if they want to attract diversity to their teams.” Cheng is currently working on a new curriculum for Robogals and encourages mining engineering companies to get in touch (robogals.org) to discuss how Robogals could involve mining engineering principles in its program. “We’re always looking for new companies to work with so if there are any mining companies who are interested in collaborating with us we’d love to hear from them.”
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