A 15-year-old girl has appeared on a college campaign to encourage more females in engineering after spending time at Liebherr GB Ltd in Biggleswade.
Manpreet Kaur Shoker met the company’s Lee Mason at a schools apprenticeship evening, and was so taken with the idea of a career in engineering that she asked if she could spend a day there to learn about heavy construction plant engineering.
Manpreet explained: “There was an apprenticeship evening at a local school where Lee Mason spoke about ‘Apprenticeships with Liebherr’ and how they are a great option compared to going to University. I liked the idea of an apprenticeship. Lee encouraged me and my family to come and visit Liebherr headquarters in Biggleswade.
“It was really interesting. I wanted to see what kind of engineering industry Liebherr served and was particularly interested in the products I would be working on. I was also nervous because I thought it was a male type of job/industry, however I was encouraged to show that I too have a place there and that I could be a good employee with lots to offer.
“After this I asked if I could carry out a day at Liebherr as part of “take your daughter to work”. Funny thing is neither of my parents work there but I wanted to do something totally different from my class mates.”
During her time at Liebherr she worked with mentor Dave Haye where she was involved in problem solving, carrying out safety inspections of large machinery, operating an excavator – under supervision! – and checking a machine so it could go out to a customer.
And Manpreet, who went on to be featured on a Stafford Colleges “Females in Engineering” poster added: “I hope to come back in the near future to do a work placement and spend more time in each department. This will help me in the future because I would like to come back and apply for an apprenticeship with Liebherr GB in the future.
“Engineering is a really exciting and interesting challenge that is never boring and always tests your problem solving skills. It is also an industry that I would encourage other females to consider as the country is looking for approximately 840,000 new ones by 2020. I got to use my academic ability as well as my practical ability.”
Lee Mason, Apprentice Programme Manager at Liebherr GB added “I am always encouraged when a young female wants to come and work in this industry as it is often seen as a male dominated environment, however Manpreet is bucking the trend and we are seeing a shift in that more and more females are attracted to engineering.
“This is great for engineering as a whole. Manpreet joined us with enthusiasm and has the motivation to succeed which is why we were delighted to accept her for the day.”