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15 New Engineering Scholarships up for Grabs

Rebekah Valero-Lee STEM

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  • 15 three-year engineering scholarships worth £9,000 with Salford University
  • Designed to build a strong pipeline of talent in sectors worst hit by the skills shortage
  • The Morson Group want more female applicants, with no women yet part of its scholarship programme
  • Morson Group has pledged to double the number of women engineers it employs by 2020 and donated £500k to Salford University for a new engineering and innovation hub

The Morson Group has pledged a further 15 fully-funded engineering scholarships with Salford University for the 2017/18 academic year as part of its ongoing commitment to develop the next generation of engineers, scientists and technologists.

Bringing the total number of scholarships to 30, the Gerry Mason Engineering Excellence Scholarship, set up by the late Morson Group founder, enables talented young people who would otherwise be deterred from university because of the associated tuition fees and living costs, to pursue an engineering degree.

Worth £9,000, the scholarship allows students to study one of 13 engineering programmes at Salford University, including Civil, Aeronautical and Mechanical Engineering.

Scholarship recipient and third-year Aircraft Engineering with Pilot Studies student, Hamza Evans, comments: “A huge financial burden has been lifted thanks to the scholarship. Not having the financial support from my parents would have meant me working really long hours to support myself, and with exams coming up, this would have cut into my revision time. I’ve also got to visit the Morson offices, which was the most amazing experience. It was an honour to meet with Ged Mason OBE and for him to give us so much of his time.”

Since launching in 2015, the Gerry Mason Engineering Excellence Scholarship is yet to attract a female applicant, something the Morson Group and Salford University is eager to change.

The engineering and recruitment expert has already pledged to double the number of female engineers it employs by 2020. Currently, Morson has more than 1,800 female contractors working across the globe, yet specifically in engineering, the number of women compared to men sits at just 7.5 per cent.

The Morson Group also donated £500,000 to Salford University to create a new innovation hub on campus. Dubbed the ‘Morson Maker Space’, the new manufacturing and engineering facility will feature state-of-the-art equipment such as 3D printing, lasers and a waterjet cutter and work to inspire students studying STEM courses to pursue ideas and learn new skills.

Ged Mason, CEO of the Morson Group, explains:

“Our partnership with Salford University is delivering real change by attracting new talent to technical sectors and developing the next generation of trailblazers, and the extra scholarships will provide a superb opportunity for 15 more young people.

“Doing away with negative stereotypes that hold young girls back from pursuing engineering careers is crucial in attracting females onto the scholarship programme. A picture of success would be an all-female cohort and whilst it’s an ambitious goal, it’s one that can be achieved.”

Dr. Maria Stukoff, Maker Space director at Salford University, added:

“The time is now to inspire girls and young women to take up the challenge of engineering and have their voices heard in making the future.

“We must reimagine what an engineer looks like to enable a wider pool of talent to step confidently into this industry. We are thrilled to be working in partnership with the Mason family and Morson Group, to engage with the next generation of engineers to make in Salford.”

To attract more female applicants to the engineering scholarships programme, Salford University recently held a lunch with first-year female students studying Computing, Science and Engineering programmes. The event set out to inspire the University’s brightest female stars by showcasing the opportunities that a place on the Gerry Mason Engineering Excellence Scholarship would bring.

Two newly-registered students on the first-year Aeronautical Engineering course at Salford University, Katie and Ilenia, attended the lunch and said:

“We’re here to see what opportunities there are for young women to get involved in as we’re keen to get a head start in the industry. It’s always good to hear people talk from the University and see the employment routes that Computing, Science and Engineering can bring.”

Ged continues:

“Diversity is so important and brings many benefits to the learning environment, an organisation and project, including better morale and productivity.

“As a business we prioritise diversity and use techniques like unconscious bias training and blind auditioning to assist clients, particularly those in industries with a significant gender gap, to build a diverse team.

“We’re recruiting for a several major projects, including HS2 and Hinkley Point C, which require a technical workforce that we’ve never before seen in this country. These overlapping schedules also mean that we’re competing for skills within the same talent pool, showing the importance of attracting new talent, particularly females, to bridge the gaps.”

The Morson Group is also a partner of the Girls’ Network, which inspires and empowers young women from disadvantaged communities by connecting them with a mentor and a network of leading female role models.

Applications for the 2017/18 Gerry Mason Engineering Excellence Scholarship programme is now open and close 8th November. The engineering scholarships are targeted to first-year Salford University students. For more information, visit: www.salford.ac.uk/computing-science-engineering/courses/undergraduate-courses/gerrymasonscholarship