Cobham provides insight at national diversity lecture
An apprentice and graduate from Cobham plc took part in the Employer's Network for Equality and Inclusion (enei) conference, which addressed encouraging more young people into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) careers.
Cobham apprentice, Ashleigh Baker, and graduate, Joseph Somers took part in the enei’s conference this week to provide advice to employers seeking to make a difference in STEM. The conference, hosted by Santander in London, raised important questions around how to expand the talent pool in the UK by encouraging young people to study STEM subjects and what employers could do to make a difference.
Speaking at the conference, Ashleigh and Joseph addressed employers, Diversity Managers and other STEM organisations and provided insight into their experiences.
“Speaking at the enei conference was a great opportunity which meant we could address employers and tell them what works and what doesn’t when looking to recruit people into STEM careers” said Joseph. “I think it is critical that we as an industry promote a flexible and open approach to recruiting for STEM roles. By refining the recruitment process and reducing restrictions on applicants; we can ensure a variety of skillsets, gender and racially diverse applicants who feel confident in applying for roles.”
“Employers should try to use more interactive and dynamic events to engage students and provide them with information on what careers in STEM actually entail, rather than using presentations,” adds Ashleigh. “However, it is also important to change the perception of engineering amongst careers advisors, parents, teachers and the students themselves, so they recognise that being an engineer does not mean wearing overalls and getting dirty. Engineering is a huge sector with a wide variety of roles which provide endless opportunities for both men and women.”
Cobham’s Vice President of Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability, James Streater, said “We are very proud of Ashleigh and Joseph for speaking at the conference and contributing to the discussion as they have. Their insight will help employers adjust their approach and get involved in STEM initiatives so we continue to develop highly-skilled engineers in the UK regardless of gender or background.”
“In 2015 Cobham became one of the core members of the Employer’s Network for Equality and Inclusion (enei) and remains committed to welcoming and encouraging diversity in the workplace. We look forward to supporting the important work they are involved in."