Local MP Caroline Dinenage met outstanding female engineers at the QinetiQ Powerboat Challenge which took place in Gosport on Friday.


The QinetiQ Powerboat Challenge is in its sixth year and had teams from 13 schools from across Hampshire, Dorset and the Isle of Wight participating.  Each team designed and built its own miniature powerboat, which was put to the test in an obstacle course in QinetiQ’s ocean basin facility at Haslar.  The aim of the day is to get young people enthused by STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).  


At the event, Caroline met Becky Thomas, the event organiser in 2014 and winner of QinetiQ’s Outstanding Graduate of the Year Award this year.  Becky is a project engineer at QinetiQ and Caroline spoke to her about her experience in engineering.


Caroline commented:


“I was delighted to see the QinetiQ Powerboat Challenge get underway again this year and to talk to the young people involved.  It was great to see Becky Thomas again and to hear about her latest achievement – she is a real inspiration for girls wanting to enter the field of engineering.   


For too long, women have been underrepresented in this exciting industry and the take up of STEM subjects has been too low.  I am proud that QinetiQ is leading the way in getting more youngsters engaged through their powerboat competition, it is just the kind of event that could help spark a lifelong passion for science and engineering.”



Caroline has always been passionate about getting young people interested in STEM subjects and is a keen supporter of the many manufacturing and engineering apprenticeships that are on offer in the Gosport constituency.