AFBE-UK was set up in 2007 and since its formation has worked towards building up a network of UK-based engineers who promote interest in the engineering profession especially among young people of Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) backgrounds in the UK. We aim to do this by:
• Seminars: Creating a network of UK based engineers that enjoy what they do and want to inspire others to consider a career in engineering. This we do by holding programs/seminars/networking events that are of interest to such engineers. One of such events was our Annual seminar in May titled “Engineering for Natural disasters in developing countries” held at the Royal Academy of Engineering in may this year in which Martin McCann, CEO of RedR, Dr Victoria Harris of Article25. Another event in 2009 was titled Electric Africa held at the Ernst and Young Offices in London Bridge with guest speakers, Patrick Clarke, Director of connections at EDF Energy and Dr Peter Mason of the British Dam Society
• School Campaigns: Using this team of engineers to participate in mentoring and role models programmes for young children through our ‘Making Engineering Hot! Campaign. This campaign involves our members/volunteers visiting schools and colleges to talk about their profession and to promote interest in Engineering. This programme is different from similar programmes in the sense that it is carried out by engineers who are mostly from BME backgrounds and presents all branches of engineering as opposed to a particular field. In 2010 the campaign reached approximately 497 young people between the ages of 12 and 18 in the Croydon area. Our members also volunteered for Networking sessions at the recent Engineering UK Big Bang fair.
The association is not exclusive to people of a particular ethnic origin; however our activities generally tend to focus on issues relating to people of black origin, as well as on issues affecting the broader community.
More recently AFBE-UK has set up an advisory board launched at Porticullus House Westminster on 29th March 2011 hosted by Chi Onwurah MP. The advisory board is made up of made up of senior industry professionals including James Smith, Chair, Shell UK, Chi Onwurah MP for Newcastle, Prof Matthew Harrison, Director of Education at the Royal Academy of Engineering, David Waboso (Engineering Director London Underground), Patrick Clarke, Director UK Power Networks and Sandra Kerr, Business in the Community’s Race for Opportunity Director and Nelson Ogunshakin (Chief Executive of the Association for Consulting and Engineering).
For further information about AFBE-UK, please visit our website at www.afbe.org.uk, or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.