The winner of this year’s Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Young Woman Engineer of the Year (YWE) award was announced at a well-attended virtual event on Thursday, 4 March 2021.
The annual awards honour the best early-career female women engineers in the UK, with the Young Woman Engineer of the Year award presented to a dynamic young engineer who inspires her colleagues and inspires others to follow in her footsteps.
Winning the main prize, of £2,500, was Ella Podmore, a Materials Engineer for McLaren Automotive. As the leading STEM ambassador for McLaren, Ella helped launch the recent competition McLaren Automotive ran with the BBC’s Blue Peter, asking children to design their ‘supercar of the future’.
Frazer-Nash is a sponsor for the YWE awards. Celebrating the evening, People Director, Sam Geis, said:
“Congratulations to all those talented young women shortlisted for the IET awards, and especially to the winners. At Frazer-Nash, we believe that a culture of inclusion is vital to enable us to build a strong, sustainable business that harnesses innovation and creativity. We are proud to be a sponsor of the IET’s Young Woman Engineer of the Year award, helping to build a brighter future for women in STEM careers.”
In addition to the Young Woman Engineer prize, awards were presented on the night to three other worthy winners.
The Women’s Engineering Society (WES) Prize went to Shrouk El-Attar, an Electronics Engineer from Elvi, who engineers smart tech that improves the lives of cis women and trans men. Shrouk has been a STEM Ambassador since 2011, and most recently headed up a project teaching maths to children of refugees.
The Mary George Memorial Prize for Apprentices, given to given to a young female apprentice whose promise shows the potential for them to be one of tomorrow’s leaders in engineering, was won by Denize Ivy Pilarta, an Apprentice Non-Destructive Examination Engineering Technician at BAE Systems Submarines. Thanking everyone who had supported her, Denize said she wants to make sure engineering is an inclusive career for everyone.
Returning for a second year, the Gender Diversity Ambassador Award recognises an individual who has spent a large proportion of their career committed to addressing the gender imbalance within their profession. The 2021 award went to Pamela Wilson, with nominees praising her role in mentoring and influencing so many over the years.
The evening included presentations from 2012 winner, Yewande Akinola, who shared her top five tips for success: kindness, hard work, speak your truth, creativity and ambition. Last year’s winner, Ying Wan Loh described her year, which has included featuring on the Forbes 30 under 30 list; and shared how the Coronavirus restrictions have actually helped her to reach a wider global audience. Finally, there was a special message from astronaut Tim Peake, who personally congratulated all the winners and finalists.
For more information on the IET awards, visit: youngwomenengineer.theiet.org.