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Kerrine Bryan | Woman Engineer of the Day
Kerrine is a Principle Engineer for CB&I. Recently recognised in the UKs top 35 women in business under 35 by Management Today magazine, Kerrine has also published a children’s picture book to inspire the younger generation. Here Kerrine shares how she was introduced to a career in engineering, and her thoughts on how to encourage girls to consider engineering as career of choice…
What inspired you to pursue a career in engineering?
My A Level Maths teacher recommended that I take part in the Headstart scheme, a programme run by the Engineering Development Trust. The charitable trust provides hands our STEM activities and engineering taster courses to encourage young people into technology-based careers. Through the trust I spent a week at Glamorgan University, getting a taste of life as an engineering undergraduate and learning about potential courses and careers in engineering. From then on I was hooked, and I continued to take part in the Engineering Education Scheme and Year in Industry.
What are your future career aspirations?
I am currently on secondment in the CB&I sales department, it’s great and very interesting to see things from a different angle. I hope to continue to broaden my knowledge in engineering and the energy industry.
What has been a key achievement of your career to date?
I was lead electrical engineer for the living quarters of a North Sea offshore oil platform, with a team of three engineers, six designers and a £2m engineering budget.
Have you faced any challenges in your career or studies so far?
Luckily nothing major. Although I am one of only a few female engineers I have always felt that I am a valued member of the team.
How do you think we can inspire young women to pursue a career in engineering?
I think it’s important to change the perception of the industry- engineering is not all men in hard hats with greasy hands! It’s great to see a lot of encouraging work being done, for example STEM ambassadors visiting schools. However, I believe it’s important to talk to girls and their parents from a young age, this is the reason I published a children’s picture book called ‘My Mummy is an Engineer’.
Who inspires you?
My mum inspires me, she is always positive, no matter what the situation is. We also lost a friend to cancer last year, and she always inspired me to follow my dreams.
Do you have any advice for girls and women?
If you enjoy maths, science and problem solving, find out about the many engineering schemes available to you. They provide some great insights & experiences to help you learn more about the industry and what it a career in engineering involves.
For those at University, try to attend as many careers fairs as you can to find out about the various fields within your own discipline and apply for summer placements within engineering firms, which can also help when applying for graduate jobs.
How did you hear about Matchtech?
I was listed along with Matchtech’s Head of Maritime Natalie Desty, as one of the UKs top 35 women in business under the age of 35 by Management Today magazine in 2014.