Regional group aimed at inspiring women in industry kicks of series of meetings at UTC Swindon

January 27, 2016

UTC Swindon principal Angela Barker-Dench is to speak at the first Women in Industry event, which is being hosted by the college tomorrow.

The event, which is open to women who work, or would like to work, in all sectors, is an opportunity to hear about the career journeys of prominent women working in industry.

Attendees from major businesses such as Network Rail, Great Western Railway, AMEY Rail and insurance group Zurich are expected to attend and all UTC Swindon’s female students have been invited.

Angela, pictured, will draw on her own engineering career, which began in 1980 when she started an apprenticeship in electrical engineering with General Electric (GE).

She became particularly interested in design engineering and was sponsored by GE through college and university.

In the late 1980s, while working full-time at GEC, Angela took up an evening role as an engineering lecturer at the Birmingham Metropolitan College, formerly Matthew Boulton College.

Angela joined UTC Swindon from Capel Manor College in Enfield, Middlesex, where she had been vice-principal.

Also speaking at the event will be Jane Austin, head of engineering at Network Rail. Jane is a chartered civil engineer with 23 years’ engineering and project management experience in the railway industry. She oversees engineering for the company’s Western and Wales routes, which are currently undergoing improvements costing £7bn.

Jane is involved in major projects such as the Great Western electrification programme from London Paddington through Swindon to Swansea, the Crossrail programme in London and Network Rail’s re-signalling programme.

Women in Industry is a forum for promoting and supporting women who work in the industrial and engineering industries. Founded by the Western Route staff at Network Rail, it hears from female leaders in the region about the highs and the lows of their career journeys and enables women to network and be inspired about opportunities open to them in the railway sector and the wider engineering industries. It meets quarterly at different locations across the region.

Tomorrow’s event is from 5.30pm to 7pm at the UTC Swindon’s Bristol Street site.

For more information about the Women in Industry email or


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