Canterbury Christ Church University will host a new hub for the south east to bridge the gap between business, industry and education to inspire women and girls to take up Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) careers.

Building on the work of the University’s Kent and Medway Engineering, Design, Growth and Enterprise (EDGE) Hub, the WISE South East hub will work to encourage more under-represented groups of young people to engage with STEM, with a view to increasing the proportion studying and working in these fields.

The WISE South East hub is the one of nine regional WISE hubs around the country that are set up to give women and men in STEM a local network to get involved with. The hubs aim to support women working in STEM and to inspire girls at local schools about the great career opportunities available for women in science and engineering and help forge strong links between schools, universities and STEM industries in their local areas.

Dr Anne Nortcliffe, Founding Head of the School of Engineering, Technology and Design at Canterbury Christ Church University, said: ““We are excited to be able to bring the WISE South East hub to our region. The hub will build on the extensive work and research within the University to understand ‘what works’ to achieve gender equality and inclusion in STEM. This work is critical if we are to create a sustainable, inclusive, diverse and insightful workforce. A STEM workforce that can address the challenges of today and tomorrow for everyone.”

The WISE South East hub will be delivering outreach and engagement work in local schools to change young people’s mindsets on what engineers do, inspire students to study STEM subjects and help to remove the institutional barriers to change and inclusion.

The hub will also act as a home for the region’s STEM businesses and workforce, supporting them with an opportunity to network, connect and share best practice.

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Opportunities to engage with the hub include events, becoming a STEM ambassador, sponsorship of outreach activities and networking opportunities. To find out how you can get involved and support the hub then please email:


Notes to editors

STEM gender gap

Taken from Engineering UK report - EngineeringUK | Inspiring tomorrow's engineers.

  • 12% of those working in engineering are female, compared with 47% of the overall UK workforce
  • 2017/18: 22% A Level Physics entrants were female
  • To keep pace with demand 203,000 people with Level 3+ engineering skills are required per year to 2024 (see also Home Office Shortage Occupations for the Skilled Worker Route)
  • Female share of engineering and technology HE entrants in 2018 to 2019:
    • First degree (17.6%)
    • Other undergraduate (12.7%)
    • Postgraduate taught (28.1%)
    • Postgraduate research (26.5%)


WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) is a Community Interest Company, established in 1984. Its core purpose is “to enable and energise people who increase the participation, contribution and success of women in the UK’s scientific, technology and engineering (STEM) workforce”.

WISE regional hubs were established to provide a local network for women and men to engage with around the WISE agenda.


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