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Highlights from the STEM Women UK Graduate Careers Event

Highlights from the STEM Women UK Graduate Careers Event

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On Wednesday 17th February, we hosted our biggest virtual event yet, welcoming 591 STEM students and graduates to meet with 17 inspiring employers.

The event was targeted towards STEM students and graduates who identify as female, are based across the whole of the UK and are looking to start their careers in a STEM related industry.

Our exhibitors included PwC, Optiver, VMware, KPMG and Infosys who all presented a speaker session and featured on the panel, plus Imperial Business School, MathWorks, Efficio Consulting, BAE Systems, Flow Traders, Jefferies, EIP, Jane Street, General Dynamics, SEI, Lidl and Danaher.


Before the event, 1287 students and graduates signed up to attend and 591 logged in on the day. Attendees and employers had a total of 1,084 conversations and sent 7,305 chat messages! During our live presentations, we recorded a peak audience of 378 and attendees made 274 job applications during the event.

The day began with a welcome talk from Sophie Chadwick, STEM Women Events Manager, followed by a keynote speech from Sarah Perugia, Executive Leadership Coach. Sarah’s presentation focused on ‘How to present yourself with impact and purpose in a virtual environment.’

There was then a short networking break where attendees were encouraged to initiate webchats, browse stalls and apply for jobs.

Our speaker sessions then began with a talk from Mamunah Khan, a Solution Engineer Graduate at VMware. Mamunah gave attendees an overview of her journey so far, from beginning a degree in law, to switching to computer science and realising her passion for technology. Mamunah then went on to describe how she had actually found VMware through attending a STEM Women event in 2019! She highlighted the importance of networking and described how much she enjoyed the event and what she learnt during the application process.  She then went on to highlight the amazing culture at VMware and the diverse range of people that work at the company.


Mamunah's speaker session

Next up we welcomed Safia Mirza, a DevOps Engineer at KPMG. Safia began her session by talking about her journey into technology. She also studied law at university and started her career working as a paralegal, before moving into financial services and finally finding her dream role on the Technology Graduate Scheme at KPMG. Safia gave attendees an interesting insight into her role as a DevOps Engineer and the exciting projects she works on, including some challenges she has overcome along the way! We also heard about a new coding course for women she has recently setup with her colleagues.

Zuotian Tatum, Team Lead Infrastructure Data at Optiver was next to present a session. Zuotian started by introducing Optiver and talked about some of the reasons why electronic trading is one of the most exciting industries to work in. She outlined the history of the company and showed where their offices are based around the world. Her presentation ended with some invaluable advice on the skills graduates need to succeed at Optiver and what opportunities are available.


Zuotian's speaker session

The penultimate speaker session was presented by Payal Singh Chauhan, Relationship Manager at Infosys. Payal began with an introduction to Infosys, explaining how the company was founded in India around 40 years ago and has grown at a fast pace ever since. Attendees were then given some detailed information about the Instep internship and the best ways to submit applications.  

Finally, we heard from Laurie Watson, Student Recruitment Officer at PwC. Laurie covered the main business areas PwC work in, locations of their offices and some of the exciting opportunities they have available. This included information about graduate programmes, work placements, summer internships, women in business and black talent in business. Attendees were then given lots of great advice on navigating the application process and how to succeed in virtual interviews and assessment centres.  

After the speaker sessions, attendees were then invited to join the audience of a panel session featuring women working in STEM industries. The panel included Catalina Cicioiu from Optiver, Madelaine Helleur O’Connor from KPMG, Nikita Ramrattan from VMware, Poppaea McDermott from PwC and Sara Williams from Infosys. Attendees asked the panellists a range of questions from how to succeed whilst working remotely, the best ways to build relationships at work and how to network effectively.  Our panellists answered with some really inspiring advice, and helpful tips for navigating the world of work.   


Panel session

We have already had some great feedback from both employers and attendees. One representative from EIP said:

“All in all, this event was great, the platform was very easy to use with no difficulty on the day (despite us not having used anything like this before). The candidates search feature is excellent. Easy application process for candidates. Customer support also excellent. Would sign up to future events.”

An attendee sent a lovely message after attending the event:  

“I just attended the STEM women’s event you hosted and just wanted to say a massive thank you for how smoothly the event was run. It was so insightful and so inspiring being able to see the success of fellow women in similar professions, so thank you again for hosting such a great event.”

Next up, we are hosting an event for companies and attendees based in Australia! We will then be hosting an Ireland Technology Event and a UK Technology Event. For more information, visit our events page and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook for updates.

There are still spaces left for employers for our upcoming events, if you’re interested in exhibiting, get in touch with laurenj@stemwomen.co.uk.