Our First Anniversary with Women in Aerospace Europe
At QinetiQ, we choose to challenge gender stereotypes and bias, we choose to help forge a gender equal world, and we choose to work for a gender equal mindset. And since last year, we have joined Women in Aerospace – Europe (WIA-E) as a corporate member.
WIA-E is the reference professional association in Europe for women (and men!) who want to work and develop professionally in the space sector, support the younger generation, and contribute in shaping a diverse and inclusive future. When we joined WIA one year ago, we hoped to make a statement on where we stand with gender inclusivity, but we also aimed at increasing the female ratio on the engineering workforce in our Space Team. And we have to say, we have had a lot of new employees join our team recently and are proud to certify that a lot more women have joined.
WIA-E is present all over Europe, with local groups in the major European cities with a space presence. They are strong and diverse units that meet regularly for networking events, trainings, and lectures. These events include professional trainings and workshops with qualified trainers and coaches, company visits, mentoring evenings, or simply social occasions. WIA-Europe has also become a partner of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) on an important project that strengthens the awareness, capacity, and skills of individuals and institutions to promote gender equality and women's empowerment in the space sector: Space4Women.
But that’s not just it. Our Space Team also collaborated recently with Womenpreneur. Womenpreneur is a Brussels-based organisation whose aim is to advance women’s place in the entrepreneurial scene, technology, innovation & society. They meet their aim through a variety of innovative experiences, entrepreneurial activities, mentorship sessions, leadership programs, technology education, networking events and opportunities. Through Womenpreneur, we invited a group of young and talented women to visit our site in Kruibeke, Belgium, and to hear the work experiences of our ladies. They got to discover our space projects and hear what it is like to work in space. It was a very rewarding experience and we hope to have inspired some great minds.