Press release

Young Woman Engineer of the Year finalists announced

15 October 2012

The Institution of Engineering & Technology (IET) today announces the finalists for the 2012 Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards, celebrating dynamic young women representing the very best in engineering and technology.

The IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards are made up of three prestigious prizes that honour outstanding female engineers under the age of 30 working in the UK.

The Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards recognise the achievements of fresh new female talent in engineering and aims to encourage and inspire others to enter the profession.

Ranging from 18-28 years old and occupying a great mix of roles from a structural engineer who worked on The Shard to a Real Time FRACAS (Failure Review and Corrective Action System) analyst for Euro Fighter Typhoon Aircrafts, the IET’s Selection Panel has chosen five professional engineers and apprentices based on their achievements to date and commitment to the advancement of women and technology.

The 2012 finalists are:
• Roma Agrawal (WSP Group)
• Yewande Akinola (ARUP)
• Jessica Jones (LGS Ltd)
• Philippa Riddoch (BAE Systems)
• Charlotte Tingley (BAE Systems)

The winners will be presented with their cash prize and awards at an exclusive ceremony on 6 December at IET London: Savoy Place. The ceremony will be hosted by TV presenter and talented ex-gymnast Gabby Logan.

Logan comments: “I’m honoured and really excited to be asked to present this year’s event. I fully support efforts that encourage young women to take jobs in traditionally male-dominated industries, such as engineering and technology, and to show them support early in their careers.”

The headline sponsors for YWE 2012 include: BP, EADS, GCHQ, Intel, National Grid, Ofcom, The Royal Air Force, RS Components, Selex Galileo, Siemens, Transport for London and Virgin Media.

Media enquiries to:

Robert Beahan
External Communications Manager

Tel: +44 (0)1438 767336
Mob: +44 (0)7595 400912
Email: rbeahan@theiet.org

Notes to editors:

Finalist Biographies:

Roma Agrawal, Senior Structural Engineer, WSP Group, London

Roma joined WSP (London) in 2005 as a Graduate Structural Engineer. Since then she has worked on a number of complex and iconic projects with high profile architectural practices, including the Renzo Piano Building Workshop, Adamson Associates, John McAslan and Partners and SOM. They have ranged from tall towers to sculptures, in a variety of materials, including London’s new iconic tower, The Shard.

In 2011 she was awarded IStructE’s ‘Young Structural Engineer of the Year’ award for her work on The Shard and for promoting engineering with students. She was featured on Channel 4’s documentary ‘The Tallest Tower’ explaining the principles of the structure.

Yewande Akinola, Environmental Services Engineer, ARUP, Bristol

Yewande is an Environmental Services Engineer with ARUP. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering Design and Appropriate Technology from the University of Warwick and a Masters in Innovation and Design for Sustainability from Cranfield University. She has a passion for innovation and sustainable water supply and enjoys the challenge of taking engineering ideas from concept right through to manufacture. She combines her career with media roles through which she shares the thrills of life as an Engineer.  

Yewande also has interests in water and sanitation for underdeveloped and developing countries. In 2009 she was awarded Society of Public Health Engineers ‘Young Engineer of the Year’. In her spare time, she enjoys building models, settling into a good book, writing, travelling and exploring new places.

Jessica Jones, Managing Director, LGS Ltd, Cardiff

Jessica Leigh Jones is an 18 year old student who has recently been accepted to study Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Cardiff University in 2012. Jessica enjoys both physics and electronics equally and has recently been involved in designing a portable, electronic foetal contraction monitor for Huntleigh Healthcare Diagnostics. Independent of this, she is currently in the process of patenting a form of fibre optic sensing technology and setting up a limited company to market this product. In her free time she is an enthusiastic STEM Ambassador and promoter of women in the engineering disciplines.

Philippa Riddoch, Manufacturing Engineer, BAE Systems, Balderstone, Lancashire

Philippa joined BAE Systems’ Apprentice scheme in 2005 and during her three and a half year apprenticeship was appointed project manager on the FLAVIIR project, a £6.2m research programme looking at future technologies for UAVs.  She was personally responsible for a £20,000 manufacturing budget and management of eight other apprentices and coordinating the manufacture and assembly of the Demon Unmanned Air Vehicle with several universities, including Cranfield.

Presently, Philippa is a Manufacturing Engineer working on the F-35 Lightning II aircraft. Her role is to work as an Improvement Engineer which involves looking at issues, problems or defects that may occur during the production process and implement Corrective Actions to avoid / remove these. Outside of work, Philippa has represented England and Great Britain at Ice Hockey.

Charlotte Tingley, Integrated Project Team, Euro Fighter Typhoon Aircraft Helmet, BAE Systems, Rochester, Kent

Charlotte started with BAE Systems in 2006 as an Advanced Technical Apprentice after finishing her GCSEs. She completed a three year apprenticeship gaining experience and qualifications in the Aerospace Engineering Industry

After her apprenticeship, Charlotte was taken on as a Test Technician and within three months of this she was promoted to Leading Hand, being the youngest ever to achieve this role at Rochester.

After two years being a Leading Hand, Charlotte was selected from the entire pool of manual workers to harness test knowledge by electronically analysing test failure data and recommend corrective actions that contribute to product reliability and safety, this known as Real Time FRACAS (Failure Review and Corrective Action System).

Outside of work Charlotte likes to volunteer and give back something to those less fortunate. She had the privilege of spending 12 weeks on a remote island in Fiji last October, involved in a Marine Conservation Project to educate the local Fijians about their surrounding marine life on the coral reefs, this being their primary source of food