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Female fellowship campaign gathers pace

A bid to increase the number of female fellows in the Institution of Civil Engineers has won approval from the top of the body.

The campaign, started by CH2MHill director of rail, Europe, Sue Kershaw recently, was backed by ICE president David Balmforth.

Fellowship, the highest grade of membership of the Institution, is for senior civil engineers who have made a significant contribution to the civil engineering profession, or advanced the practice of engineering.

Kershaw urged all attendees of a recent reception for ICE London fellows to nominate one woman in their organisation to receive the status.

“There are currently 100 female fellows out of a cohort of 5,500,” she said.

“When I was made a fellow in 2000 I was one of 12. This growth is an appalling stat.”

Balmforth agreed, calling the low number of female fellows “a poor reflection on our diversity”.

He added: “While we are working to change this, Sue Kershaw is right, we do need a step change. It is fantastic to have a highly regarded civil engineer like Sue driving that, and calling on industry to nominate female fellows.

“However, to bring about a sustained increase in female fellows in the longer term and ensure the many talented women in the profession are recognised, we need a sustained response – one that stretches beyond my presidential year.”

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