A TEENAGER has been equipped with the tools to inspire the next generation of female engineers.

Ambitious Alice Bracher has become the first of 100 girls in the UK to receive a kit, containing all the project materials she will need to set up a new STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) club at her school.

The 17-year-old Didcot Girls' School pupil was awarded the Think Kit by The Smallpeice Trust yesterday, to celebrate 100 years of the Women’s Engineering Society in the UK.

The national STEM education charity is handing out the kits, which include structured session plans, worksheets and guidance videos, to enable engineers of the future to found 100 STEM clubs.

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Recipients are all girls on the Arkwright Engineering Scholarship, who have gone through a rigorous selection process to be identified as role models. 

The scholarships are awarded to students at age 16, and support them through the two years of their A-Levels or equivalent qualifications.

Alice, whose scholarship is sponsored by The RAF Charitable Foundation, will lead 20 younger Didcot Girls' students at the new STEM club. 

The teenager, who is studying maths, further maths and physics, hopes to pursue a career in aerospace or astronautics.

She said: "The opportunity to help other younger students in my school to be inspired about engineering and for me to proactively encourage more females to take up STEM subjects is very rewarding and I’m looking forward to seeing the results.

"I am sure I will gain as much from the experience, as will the participants in the STEM Club."

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She added that she has had a 'fantastic' experience with the scholarship. 

Kevin P Stenson, CEO of The Smallpeice Trust, highlighted how women currently make up just 11 per cent of the UK engineering workforce - the lowest percentage in Europe.

Dr Stenson said: "The UK needs more female students to want to fulfil their potential via a career in engineering, and inspiration and engagement opportunities is central to this.

"No one meeting brilliant Arkwright Engineering Scholars like Alice can fail to be inspired by them and their incredible potential."