Careers in Science, Computing and Engineering

Women and Equalities – in the House of Commons on 30th March 2022.

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Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers Conservative, Chipping Barnet

What steps she is taking to encourage more women to enter careers in science, computing and engineering.

Photo of Kemi Badenoch Kemi Badenoch Minister for Equalities, Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government), Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office), Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (jointly with Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)

We have seen good progress on increasing the number of girls studying science, technology, engineering and maths—STEM—subjects at school, but we know that too many women drop out of STEM careers because of caring responsibilities. That is why we recently announced a new scheme to help women into STEM roles after taking time out of work to care for their family. This will help organisations to recruit those who are too often overlooked because of a gap on their CV when providing employment support.

Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers Conservative, Chipping Barnet

Given the obvious labour shortages in construction, can I encourage Ministers to work with groups such as Women into Construction to encourage women to take on apprenticeships and careers in engineering and construction?

Photo of Kemi Badenoch Kemi Badenoch Minister for Equalities, Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government), Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office), Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (jointly with Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)

My right hon. Friend can consider Ministers suitably encouraged. I speak as an engineer who also had an apprenticeship, and I know how important organisations such as Women into Construction are. We will do everything we can to work with them and to support women into apprenticeships and engineering.