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Empowering Diversity in Engineering

Hartlepool College of Further Education’s Helen Gott (right) was recently appointed head of process, transports, fabrication and welding is pictured with Lauren Calvert, the fabrication and welding lecturer, who will work closely with the SeAH Wind apprentices. Picture: HCFE
Hartlepool College of Further Education’s Helen Gott (right) was recently appointed Head of Process, Transport, Fabrication and Welding is pictured here with Lauren Calvert; Fabrication and Welding Lecturer, who will work closely with the SeAH Wind apprentices. Picture: Hartlepool College of Further Education

New Scholarship Program Aims to Bridge Gender Gap in Heavy Engineering and Fuel Teesside's Growth. Hartlepool College of Further Education has teamed up with SeAH Wind to usher in a new era of diversity in the engineering sector. With the appointment of Helen Gott as the head of school for engineering, the college is set to inspire more females to pursue careers in heavy engineering through an innovative scholarship initiative.

SeAH Wind's partnership with Hartlepool College of Further Education presents an exciting opportunity for those enrolling in a fabrication and welding course starting in September 2023. The South Korean-owned business, which is on a mission to establish the world's largest bespoke monopile factory on Teesside, is initially seeking to recruit 14 apprentices after they complete a 12-week scholarship, accompanied by a weekly bursary allowance.

Highlighting the need for a diverse workforce, Helen Gott, Head of Process, Transport, Fabrication, and Welding at Hartlepool College, emphasizes, "To promote growth and diversity within the sector, it is crucial that we inform and inspire young women about the vast opportunities available in the industry. Encouraging more females to join roles at SeAH Wind and nurturing female apprentices through our curriculum with relevant qualifications is a vital step forward."

The college's commitment to diversity is not new. Hartlepool College of Further Education annually hosts a Women in Engineering event that has steadily gained popularity over the years. The event brings together female engineers and apprentices, who engage with local primary and secondary pupils through hands-on activities. Despite a brief slowdown during the Covid period, the event's impact has been noteworthy, showcasing the growing interest in engineering among women.

Students from High Tunstall Comprehensive in HCFE Aircraft Hanger
Women in Engineering Day 2023: Empowering female students from High Tunstall School of Science and Technology in our dedicated Aircraft Hangar.

Helen Gott's dedication to engineering education has been steadfast since joining Hartlepool College in 2013. With a background in mechanical engineering and teaching, she understands the importance of encouraging both girls and boys to contribute their skills toward a sustainable future. She remarks, "Engineering is about safeguarding resources and improving life for future generations. We've been nurturing the next generation of engineers since 1849, and this collaboration with SeAH Wind is a step toward closing the loop on that legacy."

SeAH Wind's ambitious plans to construct the towering monopiles – the foundation for offshore wind turbines – have already ignited interest. The partnership aligns perfectly with Hartlepool College's role in shaping the future of engineering.

Lauren Calvert, a former student turned fabrication and welding lecturer, shares, "The perception of female engineers is changing, and their contributions are invaluable to the field. We're witnessing a rise in female apprentices, and I'm committed to seeing these numbers continue to grow. The support from Hartlepool College for achieving this goal has been exceptional."

As Teesside evolves into a hub of sustainable engineering, this collaboration aims to empower individuals, irrespective of gender, to contribute to a net-zero future. The scholarship program symbolizes the continuation of Hartlepool College's legacy in training engineers and aligns with SeAH Wind's vision of a diverse and skilled workforce.

Helen Gott sums up the excitement succinctly, stating, "The changing landscape of sustainable engineering is thrilling, and being part of this journey alongside SeAH Wind is a privilege."

For those interested in securing a spot in the SeAH Wind scholarship program, inquiries can be directed to





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