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Women in Engineering

Award winning Emma Hartley Ignites the Mind

Award winning Emma Hartley Ignites the Mind

Emma Hartley, Product Designer here at G2 Innovation, wowed us all this April when she scooped the top prize at University of Nottingham’s Ingenuity17 – a competition that saw over 600 entrants from University of Nottingham’s campuses here in Nottingham, Malaysia and Ningbo China.

Ingenuity17 asked entrants to Ignite The Mind with their innovative business ideas.  And we’re so proud that Emma, who studied at Nottingham University took home the 1st prize of £5,000 as well as winning the People’s Choice Award, 1st prize from Engineers in Business and prizes from Potter Clarkson, Shakespeare Martineau and BDO bringing the total to just over £20,000 in prizes.

Emma’s idea was the creation and design of Pulse AED a new automated external defibrillator

Inspired after one of her friends passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest at just 21, Emma wanted to see how she could use her skills to make a difference to others.

Defibrillators are now a common sight in village phone boxes across the country.  But Emma realised there might be a problem, when one was installed in the phone box next to the pub where she worked.  Locals kept asking what the ‘first aid box’ was in the phone box.

Emma wanted to make defibrillators more recognisable, and made this the focus on her final project on her Project Design and Manufacture degree at University of Nottingham.  But as her project started she realised there were more pressing difficulties with defibrillators.  It’s not just that they are hard to spot, they are not easy to use either.

Emma Hartley G2 Innovation

Working alongside several academics at the University of Nottingham, she discovered that real world effectiveness of defibrillators was limited.  Time is critical – if used within the first 5 minutes survival is boosted from 6% to 74%, so having them easily accessible is crucial.  In the UK there are over 60,000 cardiac arrests a year outside of hospital. But even when they are available, people need training and even when trained, over 50% of users deliver an ineffective shock.  Add to this the price point of around £1200, current defibrillators are expensive and are difficult to use.

Emma’s Pulse AED will be intuitive to use, taking pressure off the user.  Cardiac arrest is not the sanitised vision we see on our TVs, people are often grey, sweating and gasping for breath and having to use a defibrillator is stressful.  Emma has created something that can be used by anyone without any training.  The Pulse AED will also be sold at a much lower price point, at around £100, meaning that they can be more widely available.

It’s absolutely amazing. Being a part of and winning Ingenuity17 means that I can start developing the product and the electronics inside of it; and get market ready.  The Conference is invaluable as the connections you make with mentors and business is brilliant
— Emma Hartley, Product Designer and Pulse AED Director

It's shocking that only 9% of the engineering workforce is female. And only 6% of registered engineers and technicians are women. The UK has the lowest percentage of female engineering professionals in Europe, at less than 10%, while Latvia, Bulgaria and Cyprus lead with nearly 30%.  Which makes Emma's 1st prize from Engineers in Business even more important and us even more proud that over 50% of our team are women.

The next step for Emma is product development.  We’re proud at G2 Innovation to support Emma to bring this to market, both through giving her time to develop and the use of our resources.  We’re proud to be part of developing a product with Emma that will ultimately save lives.

Congratulations Emma!

Emma Hartley Pulse AED Director

Emma got some celebrity status following her awards. She was featured in The Nottingham Evening Post, The Creative Quarter and Made in the Midlands.

Women in Engineering Day

Women in Engineering Day

According to the IET 2013 skills survey, only 7% of the engineering workforce in the UK is female, which is a shockingly small number. So why is that number so low?

Gender stereotyping dissuades some women from pursuing traditionally male dominated industries, such as manufacturing and engineering. ‘National Women in Engineering Day’ is a day dedicated to celebrating the achievements of women in engineering and to raise the profile of women in this field.  

The Women’s Engineering Society is a professional network of women engineers, scientists and technologists who offer inspiration, support and professional development. This not-for-profit organisation works to encourage women to succeed as engineers, scientists and leaders.

WES stands for Women, Education and Sustainability, which are the three core values of the network. Working with organisations and influencers to promote gender diversity, it is the aim of WES to support women and promote the education, study and application of engineering.

Lets take a look at some of the truly inspiring women from Engineering.

Margaret Hamilton

Margaret Hamilton, a computer scientist and engineer born in 1936 is known for her work at NASA. After majoring in mathematics, earning a B.A in mathematics and a minor in philosophy, she moved to Boston with the intention of doing further graduate study in abstract mathematics. After working on the SAGE project at Lincoln Labs where she wrote software for the first AN/FSQ-7 computer, Hamilton went on to work for NASA and became director and supervisor of software programming in 1965 whilst working on the Apollo space mission. At NASA her work was responsible for helping pioneer the Apollo on-board guidance software needed to navigate and land on the mood.

Beatrice A. Hicks

This inspiring woman, daughter of William Lux Hicks, a chemical engineer, decided from a young age that she wanted to pursue a career in engineering. While her parents neither supported nor dissuaded Hicks’ desired career path, some of her teachers and classmates tried to discourage her ambitions, as it was viewed as a socially unaccepted role for a woman.  After graduating from Orange High School in 1935 and after receiving a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Newark College of engineering in 1939, Hicks became the first female engineer to be hired by Western Electric and became both the co-founder and first president of the Society of Women Engineers. Hicks was selected to serve on the Defense Advisory Committee for Women in Services between 1960 and 1963 and was the director of the first international conference of women engineers and scientists and represented the USA at four international management congresses.

Cynthia Maxwell

Former Apple employee working on IOS, Pinterest app guru, NASA employee and Yahoo’s senior director of engineering, Maxwell has an impressive career history.  She was among the first 15 people hired at Pinterest and her work is responsible for the sleek iPad and iPhone app that people know, use and love today. After spending 6 years working for Apple, Maxwell has worked on projects like iPhones audio system and Mac OS. Her work at NASA led to her creating a virtual environment, which was used for astronaut training, telemedicine and surgical planning.  

Emily Warren Roebling

In the late 1800’s there was no greater challenge than spanning the East River from Brooklyn to New York. The dream and plan of Emily’s father-in-law in, John A. Roebling, was to do just that, and in 1869 he began designing the bridge.

Emily became involved through the passing of her father-in-law when her husband, Washington took over as master bridge builder. In order to assist her husband as much as she could, Roebling began studying civil engineering, math, material strength, stress analysis and cable construction. By 1872, Washington was left bed ridden and partially paralyzed after contracting a serious illness. Believed by many to be the Chief Engineer in charge of the day-to-day construction of building the Brooklyn Bridge, Emily became a major participant in the project. She answered questions from officials and contractors about the bridge, kept records, and represented her husband at social functions. One of the most important social functions Emily attended was a meeting with the American Society of Civil Engineers where when questions arose regarding the ability of her husband to lead the project, Emily delivered a moving speech and cemented her husband’s position as Chief Engineer. Although she had never planned on becoming an engineer, she accomplished what can only be described as a huge engineering feat for the time.

Elsie Eavis

In 1920, aged 22, Eavis graduated from the University of Colorado with a degree in Civil Engineering. By 1927, she was the first woman to be a full time member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and began making the most of her engineering education. Eavis joined the Engineering and News Reports as an assistant manager for market surveys and eventually became the manager of the Construction Economics department. Her work here consisted of directing ENR’s measurement of ‘post war planning’ in the construction industry. Eavis converted the data into the first continuous database of construction. Following her retirement in 1963, Eavis was advisor to the National Commission on Urban Affairs and also advised the International Executive Service Corps about construction costs in Iran. In 1979 the American Association of Cost Engineers  (ASCE) awarded her Honorary Membership in recognition of her achievements. She was the first woman to be awarded.

Happy Women in Engineering day folks.

Written by

Katherine Thomson