Two of our female students said they felt ‘welcomed, heard and empowered’ when they visited the Houses of Parliament in July, alongside students from other UTCs to represent the Baker Dearing founding board.
On the day they represented female and non-binary students. They spoke to MPs about their UTC education and found out more about the workings of Parliament. Here’s what they had to say about the day…
Abhigail: This trip was an eye-opener for me; initially I went to the trip not very interested in politics and by the end of it I wanted to be a baroness in the House of Lords!
First, we had a tour around the House of Commons and House of Lords and learnt about what they do as well as the history behind it. Then we had the chance to talk to several MPs about their experiences and why they decided to take on that job.
It was really nice listening to the motivations of the other girls who were on the trip too. I’m really glad I went on the trip because I’ve gained the confidence to talk to people I’m not familiar with and it gave me an insight into future career options.
It was lovely as every MP we talked to had a completely different background and it really showed there’s no set way of reaching a goal.
Anna: When we arrived in London, we had the chance to befriend fellow students from various UTCs across the country, including SGS Berkeley Green UTC, Liverpool UTC and Scarborough UTC.
During the tour of the Houses of Parliament, we explored the historic building and learnt about the British parliamentary system, the House of Commons, the House of Lords, and the history behind every statue we came across. One aspect that particularly intrigued me was witnessing the impact of the pandemic on the voting system, as MPs had to adapt from the traditional method to an electronic voting system.
Following the tour, we met with several MPs. We were fortunate that all UTC representatives from different constituencies had the opportunity to meet their respective MPs (despite their extremely busy schedules).
It was inspiring and motivating to hear the support and encouragement the MPs shared for the concept of UTCs and particularly for females in STEM schools.
We felt welcomed, heard and empowered, as we were able to share some of the challenges we have faced, as well as our achievements, throughout our experiences at UTC and our feedback was taken on board.