Online giant Amazon has launched a new bursary to encourage more women into careers in technology.
The Women in Innovation aims to help young women from less advantaged backgrounds fulfil their ambitions of a career in innovation and technology. They will be introduced at Churchill College, University of Cambridge and King’s College London.
For this academic year, the new bursary programme will offer funding between £3,500 and £7,500 to a female student planning on attending a participating university and take up a degree that supports high-tech innovation, including Electronic Engineering, Robotics & Intelligent Systems and Computer Science courses.
Students from households with an annual income under £42,260 will be eligible for the bursary, and each recipient will be chosen by their own university. The new bursaries follow Amazon’s successful engineering bursaries offered for the past two years to students at the University of Edinburgh.
Alongside the bursary, Amazon will also help support female students’ living costs for up to four years; provide mentoring on business skills like CV-building and interview techniques; and offer potential work placements at Amazon’s local Development Centres.
Speaking about expanding the scheme, Doug Gurr, UK country manager at Amazon said, “We want to foster the next generation of high-tech superstars in Britain and help people from all walks of life invent for the future.”
“We hope that over time the bursary will make a big difference to many young women who one day will become future leaders in innovation.”
Dr Sally Boss, senior tutor at Churchill College in the University of Cambridge said, “Churchill College is pleased to partner with Amazon for the Women in Innovation Bursary.”
“We believe that this programme will help encourage young women from less advantaged backgrounds to consider studying Computer Sciences at the University, and we’re delighted to be working with Amazon to encourage applications for the course.”
Katie Worton, 19, studies Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science, and has already benefited from the existing bursary at Edinburgh University. She said, “I’ve always dreamt of forging a career in a field that’s cutting edge and innovative and I value Amazon’s support.”
“The bursary has given me the chance to grow thanks to real-life, hands-on experience during my placement at Amazon’s Development Centre in Edinburgh.”
“It’s a fantastic programme, and I’d encourage any young woman who wants to explore a career in innovation to apply.”