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STEM Ambassadors & outreach

STEM is critical to the success of the UK. And STEM subjects are vital to us here at Rolls-Royce. They are the fuel that powers our innovation. Every day our thousands of researchers, engineers and technicians use the principles they first began to learn in school and put them into practice, creating some of the most complex machines ever built.

This is why we have set ourselves a target:

  • to reach 6 million people through our STEM education programmes and activities by 2020. A big number intended to ensure we are more innovative and creative in how we reach out, and more diverse in whom we reach out to – why many of our programmes and activities target girls.
  • Rather than 9%, we believe 50% of engineers should be women.

For more about Rolls-Royce, please go to or contact Paul Broadhead, Head of Community Investment & Education Outreach.

What we did.

Our outreach activities target all age groups of children and students, in school and outside, parents and their teachers!

  • Each month 2,000 young girls complete their Brownie science investigator badge using Rolls-Royce resources – challenging and fun (and it engages their parents too).
  • We support and promote national events such as the UK Big Bang Science Fair with over 70,000 visitors each year. The importance of ‘if it can’t be seen it might not be real’ is not lost on us.
    • 50% of our 60 STEM Ambassadors who support this event will be women.
    • Indeed about 30% of our 1,250 STEM Ambassadors who go out into schools and communities to inspire and engage are women too.
  • Our Rolls-Royce Women’s Network plays a key role in attraction, designing and delivering girls into engineering and daughters into work events across our major sites.
  • Rolls-Royce also sponsors and helps deliver the Talent2030 programme. A national engineering competition it aims to encourage girls aged 11-18 to solve the major challenges of the 21st Century using engineering solutions.

We also collaborate across the sector. For example, we partner with the RAF to help deliver their Girls into Engineering residential – which incorporates WISE’s ‘People like me’ programme. We support Built by Both that seeks to attract girls into the As Built STEM sector and worked with WISE, ICE and SEMTA to deliver a tool kit that helps provide online resources to assist SMEs in attracting women and girls into apprenticeships.

What we learned.

Is our collective outreach working? We think so.

We have doubled (27%) the number of girls who participate in the 600 work experience placements we provide each year.

25% of the latest cohort of 14 year old Young Apprentices who join us for a two year, day release programme are girls.

And 20% of our 2016 Apprenticeship intake (advanced and higher) are girls. Together we are making progress but there is still so much more to do.

What we would do differently as a result.

We all look to recruit talent into our organisations. Talented people are passionate. Don’t forget to engage this passion, energy & creativity in the creation and delivery of your outreach, inspire, attract and recruitment activities. Don’t just leave it to your HR, CSR or recruitment teams.

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