National award for young engineer from Kimberley

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A 20-year-old apprentice engineer from Kimberley has been awarded a national engineering prize for her ground-breaking work with aircraft engines.

Jessica Bestwick, of Eastwood Road, was been presented with the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Mary George Prize for Apprentices at the prestigious Young Woman Engineer of the Year awards ceremony in central London.

Jessica currently works as a higher technical apprentice for Rolls Royce where she develops and tests large aircraft engines.

The young engineer said she was shocked even to have been nominated for the award, but that she was proud to be a role model for future female engineers.

Jessica added: “I’m honoured to have won this award and I’m really looking forward to acting as an ambassador for young female engineers in 2015.

“I think if we could banish the stereotypes and promote the true face of engineering, then more young women would be attracted to such an entertaining career.”

IET statistics show that women represent only six per cent of the engineering workforce so these awards aim to find female role models to help address the science and engineering skills crisis.

Director of Membership Michelle Richmond said: “The shocking reality is that the UK is missing out on half of its potential engineering and technology workforce by failing to attract women into the industry.

“Jessica will be a fantastic role model to all young people thinking of a career in engineering and technology.”