‘Driven to Success’ on board HQS Wellington

25 March 2015


Today 15 women took part in a unique ‘career speed networking’ event with 100 girls aged 13 – 17 from four state secondary schools on the HQS Wellington. From RAF jet fighter plane pilots, to Formula E drivers, to British Airways’ first female pilot, to Merchant Navy officers and helicopter pilots, these women are breaking into traditionally male dominated arenas.

The event was on board HQS Wellington, the last surviving Second World War escort ship in Britain. Moored at Temple Stairs on the River Thames since 1948, she is the Headquarters of the Honourable Company of Master Mariners.

The career speed networkers taking part in ‘Driven to Success’ were;

Lynn Barton, Airline Pilot, British Airways – BA’s first female pilot

Michela Cerruti, Formula E Driver, Trulli FE

Melissa Denes, Editor, Guardian Weekend

Kate Gillard, HGV Driver, Tarmac –aged 19 youngest women to become a lorry driver

Caroline Lake, Owner, Caroline’s Cars

Dawn Lakin, Traffic Officer (HATO), Highways Agency

Katherine Legge, Formula E Driver, Amlin Aguri

Anne Maningas, Tube Driver, Transport for London

Rachel Martin Peer, Taxi Driver

Fiona Noone, Chief Officer, Red Funnel, Merchant Navy

Lieutenant Commander Sarah Oakley, Commander HMS Clyde, Royal Navy

Lieutenant Commander Jules Rogers, Helicopter Pilot, Royal Navy

Leonora Saunders, Photographer, 10percentrising – photographs female pioneers

Nikki Thomas, Fast Jet Squadron Commander, Royal Air Force – first women to do this job

Zoe Williams, Motorist Columnist, Guardian

Wendy Meakin, Broadcaster, Channel 4’s Four Rooms – preparing a programme on car dealers

Aim of this event and Inspiring Women campaign

The aim of this HQS Wellington event is to showcase the wide range of roles to which young girls can aspire, and in which many talented women already excel. The Inspiring Women campaign hopes to encourage thousands of other women to join and volunteer to pledge ‘one hour a year to talk to girls’ in a state school near home or work about their life experience, job and career route.

Campaign champion, Miriam González Durántez, Partner at Dechert LLP and wife of Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, said; “The women who are taking part of this event have been able to break barriers in male dominated areas and have shaken up the establishment. Most of them are pioneers in their fields and thanks to their determination and hard work, many other women – I hope! – will follow.”

Glenys Jackson, Head of Merchant Navy Training Board, says: “The Merchant Navy Training Board is delighted to be co-sponsoring the ‘Inspiring Women: Driven to Success’ event on board HQS Wellington. There are many industries in which women excel, the Merchant Navy being one of them, but so few young women are aware of these careers or that they are a viable option for them. This event is a chance to start changing these perceptions as it will allow those attending the opportunity to encounter a variety of careers that they may never have heard of and see that the potential to achieve great things within those careers is not beyond their capabilities. This is particularly important for the shipping industry as there is a limited perception of the Merchant Navy among young women and yet it offers excellent prospects and opportunities to embark upon a career navigating, driving and being in control of the most amazing high-tech, high-value commercial ships of all sizes and complexities across and around the globe.

Alan Dane, Principal at the Harris Academy Bermondsey (HAB), says: “I am delighted that girls from Harris Academy Bermondsey will be part of the Driven to Success event.  Through strong links with so many successful women in leading companies and institutions across London, we are always looking for new ways to help HAB girls live up to our motto of ‘conquering the city’. Driven to Success will open their eyes to careers that many of them will not have considered before.”

The Inspiring Women Campaign aims to bring together women – wherever they live, whatever they do and whatever their background – and girls from a wide range of state schools. Its objective is to provide the girls with the chance to talk to a wide range of women from all walks of life, from apprentices to CEOs, archaeologists to zoologists.  We already have 13,000 amazing women pledging an hour a year!

Bank of America Merrill Lynch is key strategic partner and lead corporate supporter of the Inspiring the Future campaign.

See our Flickr photo album: https://www.flickr.com/photos/edu_employers/sets/72157649226956634/