This week Jamie Hepburn MSP, Minister for Employability and Training announced that the Scottish Government will be investing in Equate Scotland’s original women STEM returners pilot. The Scottish Government will provide funding of almost £50,000 to support women with STEM qualifications back into the STEM sector after periods of absence from paid employment.
Earlier this year, Equate Scotland piloted a project with 15 women looking to return to STEM employment. We provided placements with SSE, Scottish Power and EDF Energy. The pilot was a huge success and we look forward to building on it over the next year.
This investment will allow Equate Scotland to work with 40 women returners and support them into engineering, life sciences and digital skills jobs.
Jamie Hepburn MSP said: “This funding for the Women Returners Project will encourage women to re-enter employment and encourage them to regain the confidence and skills they may have lost during career breaks when they have had time away from the workplace. While Scotland continues to outperform the UK as a whole on female employment and is making inroads on tackling the gender pay gap, there is still more to do.”
Talat Yaqoob, Director of Equate Scotland, said: “We are delighted that the Scottish Government is investing in our original pilot and we know this will make a difference to women and Scotland’s economy. We look forward to working with the minister and science, technology, engineering and mathematics industries over the next year.”
Equate Scotland’s original pilot was in partnership with Prospect Union, who we will be continuing a partnership with for the continuation of the project.
Sue Ferns, Deputy General Secretary at Prospect, said “Prospect is committed to helping people develop at work, and we are delighted to have further opportunities to build on our positive relationships with employers to support the new returners programme. As the pilot programme demonstrated, this is a win-win situation for the individual participants and for the businesses who make good use of returners’ skills and experience. All credit to the Scottish Government for supporting it’.
We will have more news on the launch of the project soon.