Cobham Celebrates National Women in Engineering Day


Cobham Celebrates National Women in Engineering Day

Female engineers at Cobham myth-bust and give students who are considering engineering some advice

Marlow, UK - National Women in Engineering Day (NWED) was celebrated by Cobham's engineers across the company today, as the Women's Engineering Society marked the important contribution made by women to Engineering.  

Cobham, with its long history of supporting diversity in the workplace, encourages female engineers to join the sector and recognises the valuable contribution they make.

Claire Johnson, Development Engineering Manager at Cobham Mission Systems who studied Mechanical Engineering and is a member of the Women's Engineering Society (WES) recalls that her healthy interest in engineering started when she was a child. "I was always interested in cars and how things are made; how they work and why they work that way.  I also loved any kind of problem solving and found the mechanical side of physics, such as the laws of motion, really interesting."

Reflecting on the experience of women in the engineering sector, Claire myth-busts some of the perceptions younger students may have. "The Aerospace sector is great to work in as a woman. The products are interesting and the projects are really challenging - there are plenty of opportunities! As with any workplace, at times you do meet people with different opinions and perspectives, but when you encounter them you work harder, learn more and become a better engineer for it." 

Tuesday Lewis, Deputy Engineering Manager at Cobham Mission Systems, who also studied Mechanical Engineering at the University of West of England (UWE), feels the possibilities for engineers are endless. "Engineering is such a huge field; there will be something, somewhere that students considering the sector will find interesting" said Tuesday. "From Medical Engineering to Marine, or Aerospace, or Automotive, or even Sustainability and Infrastructure, engineering really does underpin the future of everything we do."

"I have been lucky enough to work with some brilliant women engineers, who are smart, articulate, know their own mind and bring a different perspective; I'd love to work with more as I believe we could help grow the engineering sector considerably by changing 'how' we do things."

Ashleigh Baker, who joined Cobham as an Engineering Apprentice, is currently studying a Master's degree in Engineering Manufacture and Management and also feels there are great opportunities available for women. "Before I started studying engineering, I was warned that I would be a minority as a woman" said Ashleigh. "I heard stories of women being treated differently within the sector. I ignored this and started studying engineering anyway. I am really glad I did because I have never experienced any bias and have been treated as an equal by my peers and my work has always been respected. Women think and work in a different way to men, which is really important when coming to the right conclusion within a business and project."

So why should women join Engineering?

"In my experience, many women in engineering have one thing in common - our versatility" says Claire. "We can cater our personality and the way we manage situations or tackle problems dependent on the situation we are in. This, in my opinion, is invaluable in engineering; I have seen so much resilience in the female engineers I have met." 

Drawing upon the contribution women can make to the sector, Tuesday adds "with a shortage of students studying engineering in the UK, we are starting to struggle to support the world class engineering we have here now. We need to encourage all students to consider the merits of a career in engineering."

Ashleigh would also like the image of what 'an engineer' is to be updated. "We need more women within the sector to change the perception of engineering being a dirty, manual, traditional occupation just for men."

For more information on careers at Cobham, please visit


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Lydia Santis
External Communications
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