Womens Engineering Society: Inspiring women as engineers, scientists and technical leaders

Rachel Rowe-Whittle

Rachel Rowe-Whittle

I'm a mature student just finished my science diploma, doing chemistry/physics/biology. I am now proud to say Ive been accepted on to the Kingston aerospace engineering course.

I've always been passionate about astronautics and aircraft but after a couple of years with suffering some mental health problems my dream started to be a bit of a nightmare.

I finished school joined college and that's when it started to go downhill.
I failed my AS levels, meaning I couldn't finished the course and brought myself down. Taking a break from education and working for my dad as a safety technician for rail safety equipment, it started to raise my confidence again and motivate me back into what I really wanted in life!
I started looking for the right type of course that'd fulfil my learning needs, that's when I found the aerospace engineering course at Kingston college. This was it I had found what id been looking for! Obviously it wasn't that easy, I lived 2 hours away and it wouldn't come cheap. I applied for a bursary and a special grant that helped college students study their required course, if not in their town. This was declined and that was that, this did not stop me it just got me started!

I decided to go a different route and stop wasting time, I found an access to higher education course in science, which allowed mature students to obtain the entry levels required to get into uni. I had never considered the science path and had only applied for engineering in the past. O'how this opened my eyes wide to the world. It allowed me to use formulas and equations I'd never heard of before into everyday life. I could start to answer my own questions! It felt fantastic!

I'm not the brightest of girls and never thought I'd have a science diploma over my name but it was a way to get to my dream faster which only motivated me more, AND I PASSED!

My dream is working as an aerospace engineer, and although it's been tough I've not let anything get in the way! From knock backs to struggles I'm going to be an aero engineer and I'm the only one that can stop myself.
Anyone is capable of getting where they want to be, it doesn't matter how old or when the last time you were in education, if you want it YOU WILL GET IT!

After getting my place in uni I was getting a lot of distant family congratulating me and saying how proud my great uncle would be with carrying on the legacy. This made me wonder, our legacy? Brian Rowe of GE aviation, played a massive role in the aerospace industry when alive. He used such advanced technology and thought processes, which has influenced engine designs around the world today! As if that isn't enough to be proud of he was a huge supporter of woman in the engineering industry, donating towards foundations and scholarships that still run today. To know I'm related makes me 10x more motivated to reach the stars-literally!

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