A former winner of the ITS (UK) Eric Sampson Award for Early Careers Professional of the Year has told the organisation’s Women in ITS Group how winning gave her the confidence to do things she otherwise would have been unlikely to try.
Steph Barton won the award in 2020 and told the meeting, held to mark International Women in Engineering Day, that the accolade meant she applied for positions she would previously not have thought herself good enough for.
“I really do suffer with impostor syndrome, I sometimes think I will get found out… they’re going to spot that I don’t know what I’m talking about here,” she told the group. “Having won this award, it really did bolster my self-confidence and make me think, actually, you’re delivering good work here. Don’t doubt yourself. And I think, sometimes that can be something that us women are a little bit more prone to: doubting ourselves.”
This year’s ITS (UK) Awards not only features the Eric Sampson Early Careers Professional of the Year Award, but also a new award the Jennie Martin ITS Woman of the Year, named in honour of the Society’s retiring Secretary General.
“This is an important award to recognise the work that women do in a still male-dominated industry,” Mrs Martin explained. “Our plan is, however, that we do not have this award forever because, like our Women in ITS Forum, we should hopefully reach a point where it is no longer necessary because there is no longer a gender imbalance in the industry.”
The meeting heard how, while only 16 per cent of engineers are female, the number in the transport sector is almost double that, at 30 per cent, and that this is an important fact when building an inclusive transport system. It acknowledged the steps the Industry has made in improving inclusivity, and how there is a much greater diversity among younger people working in the industry.
The ITS (UK) Awards take place alongside the Members’ Day and President’s Dinner on 13 October in Milton Keynes. To enter any of the ten people and project categories, click here.
(Picture – Steph with her 2020 ITS (UK) Award)