RAB celebrates International Women in Engineering Day

A report published last year by EngineeringUK highlighted a rise in both the proportion and absolute number of women working in engineering roles. In 2021 the percentage of women in engineering sectors had risen to 16.5% (up from 10.5% in 2020), while the absolute number was up to 936,000 (from 562,000 in 2010). Whilst women are still largely outnumbered this increase is very positive, and we hope that the trend will not only continue but also accelerate in the coming years.

At RAB we are proud of the fact that nearly 50% of both our Engineering Team and company-wide team are women. This is testimony to creating the right culture and environment within the business to recruit, train and support women into engineering roles.

In support of International Women in Engineering Day this Friday, June 23rd, we have asked three of our female engineers about their careers to date and current roles at RAB:

Jessica Hipwood – Civil Engineering Apprentice

“I am an Apprentice Civil Engineer specialising in Flood Risk Management Engineering. I am also studying part-time for my degree in Civil and Transportation Engineering at the University of Wolverhampton, which is supported by RAB. I have just completed the 3rd year of my degree and am thoroughly enjoying gaining experience whilst studying. I work on a variety of projects at RAB including river erosion protection designs, asset maintenance strategies and asset inspection for the Environment Agency. No two days are ever the same which means you never get bored as there is always variety! I would highly recommend a degree apprenticeship to anyone thinking about choosing this route. Although there are a lot more women in engineering roles than there used to be, I think it’s important to keep inspiring and recruiting future generations of female engineers.”

Alexandra Mackaness – Assistant Flood Risk Management Engineer

“I am an Assistant Flood Risk Management Engineer with an academic background in Environmental Science. I joined the engineering team at RAB Consultants in 2021 having studied at Plymouth University for an Environmental Science degree. My role as an Assistant Flood Risk Management Engineer at RAB allows me to get involved in a variety of projects, some consisting of asset inspection, feasibility studies, flood risk assessments and flood wall designs. I really enjoy my days on site, working with a variety of people, creating designs and seeing the progress of projects from pre to post construction. It’s also great to see the improvements to people’s lives these designs can provide. I hope to inspire more young women towards an engineering career as there are so many excellent opportunities to explore!” 

Nicola Hemming – Principal Consultant

“I’ve been with RAB since 2009, starting as an Assistant across both Flood Risk Management and Resilience. I’ve been promoted several times and I am now a Principal Consultant within the Resilience Sector. I am currently seconded as a Business Change Manager on the Net Zero Carbon for Infrastructure programme, a role which involves working with infrastructure design and construction partners and Environment Agency project teams to decarbonise national capital schemes. This includes building flood defences, natural flood management schemes and managing pumping stations. Representation is so important in male dominated industries – where women at the start of their careers can see other women driving change in engineering and construction. I hope it validates and inspires career pathways within these fields.” Nicola also features in one of our Profile Biography PDFs which can be found on our RAB Careers Page.