Women in Engineering Day is celebrating its 9th year in 2022 and figures as of June 2021 show that 16.5% of engineers are women.
Penny Brown has worked in the manufacturing and engineering industry for two decades. She began in the niche market of custom cars, producing replicas and kit cars. Being a car lover, she was in awe. She taught herself all aspects of the business and occasionally helped with the construction of the sports cars. Aside from her general day to day responsibilities, she attended industry shows, went on trips with journalists and assisted with filming a demo series on how to build cars.
Penny said ‘It sounds fun and glamorous, and sometimes it was. Then there were the other times, times when I’d assist with technical advice to customers, but they would rather speak to a man. It was upsetting, but then I would revel in the fact that my male colleagues would give them the same response. What can you do if someone assumes you’re wrong?’.
Moving onward and quite literally upwards into the aerospace industry, Penny was met with new challenges, but in a much more professional environment. She was having her hard work and diligence recognised and became a valued employee. The business invested in her with personal development opportunities, training, and extra responsibility.
Penny said ‘I was contacted by Chess Dynamics nearly 6 years ago. I started as a Production Controller and within 7 months, I was promoted to Senior Production Controller. 2 years later, I was given the privilege to manage my own team. Working in Production Control gives me the capability of collaborating with all areas of the business, which is a huge positive for me. The team and I are fortunate to be involved in some amazing projects, from their initial conception, through to delivery. This gives us a huge sense of satisfaction.
It had, at times, been hard to be part of a heavily male dominated industry but times have changed and are still changing. At Chess I feel like a valued member of the team. I personally would love to see more women enter the Engineering sector and I openly encourage it… we need you!
I am proud to be a woman working in the Engineering Industry.’