Bradford College’s Engineering Department is leading the way for further education providers by being the first educational institution to be awarded the UK Resource Centre for Women in Science, Engineering and Technology’s (UKRC) ‘SET Fair Standard’, which recognises the College as a champion of gender equality.
The SET Fair Standard is the UK’s first industry award specifically aimed at achieving gender equality in the workplace. It gives public recognition for good practice and excellence in tackling gender inequality in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) sectors - sectors with longstanding issues around the recruitment and retention of women.
The challenging SET Fair Standard assessment process sees company’s equality practices independently assessed and moderated and, if successful, an award is made at one of three levels: Committed, Achieving and Outstanding.
The Engineering Department at Bradford College has robust policies and practices in place that will act as a firm foundation for further improvements in gender equality. It demonstrates best practice through initiatives such as engineering courses designed for, and delivered by women. The department has made sure its staff, learners and partners know about the need for more recruitment and progression of women on its courses and in its staff.
The award was presented to Michelle Sutton, OBE, Bradford College Principal, by Dr Evan Harris MP, the Liberal Democrat Science Spokesman, at a prestigious event held at the Royal Academy of Engineering in London.
Michele Sutton, OBE, Principal and Chief Executive of Bradford College commenting on the award said: “To be the first Further Education provider in the UK to be awarded the SET Fair Standard is an honour. This is a testament to the College’s Engineering staff who have worked hard to ensure female students achieve their full potential in terms of study and career.
For many years Bradford College has pioneered non-traditional programmes for women and this standard recognises the College as a champion of gender equality in Science, Engineering and Technology, which are already of vital importance to the region’s economy. Achieving the standard provides a solid foundation for future improvements in gender equality.”
Annette Williams, Director of the UKRC, added: “Science, Engineering and Technology will be at the forefront of taking the UK out of recession and it is critical that organisations like Bradford College play an equally productive role in challenging gender inequality. This organisation has championed gender equality. It's a challenging award to achieve and the Engineering Department should be very proud indeed to be recognised as a leader in gender equality good practice in SET. The Standard is an important initiative which can assist other organisations to increase the participation and progression of women in sectors vital to the UK economy.”
To find out more about the UKRC’s SET Fair Standard visit: www.ukrc4setwomen.org/html/employers/set-fair-standard or call 01274 436485.