WES has been making a difference to women in engineering for over 100 years, and it has only been able to do this due to the activities undertaken by its Members. There are three main ways our members support our work:
- Supporting, nurturing and advising other women engineers
- Educating the public about the fabulous career opportunities there are for women in engineering
- Getting involved with the running of the Society by sitting on boards and committees - we rely on our volunteers to provide guidance and information to ensure that our initiatives and activities continue to be relevant and serve the best interests of our Members and allow us to meet our charitable objectives.
Some Members volunteer for WES in ongoing roles, others assist us on an adhoc basis with specific tasks. Without our active members WES could not be able to deliver its breadth of initiatives to support our objectives.
Our Members decide to volunteer for WES for a variety of reasons. Some volunteer to ‘give something back’ or make a difference to a cause they are passionate about. For some it might be to meet new people, improve an existing skill or to gain further experiences, both are invaluable opportunities and can help with your career prospects. Some simply do it to increase their network and have fun.
All fully paid-up Members can volunteer for WES, this includes the membership grades Full, Fellow, Associate and Student and Apprentice Member.
We welcome Members volunteering on either an ongoing or an irregular basis. Below are the areas we seek volunteers for. Contact Tristan Holland at email@example.com if you want to find out more or express an interest in volunteering for WES.
Click on the links to find out more about the various opportunities. Interested in joining a board or committeee? Our committees have application processes, the timings of which vary across the year. Please register your interest in joining a board or committee with Tristan Holland at firstname.lastname@example.org and he will let you know when the application process is open.
Irregular roles and activities
- Speak or be on a panel on behalf of WES at events - please indicate your interest in doing this in your membership records here and you will be contacted when an opportunity arises.
- Visit schools/colleges to inspire girls - see our guidance on schools outreach in the Members Area of the website
- Join a judging panel for one of our awards - please indicate your interest in doing this in your membership records here and you will be contacted when an opportunity arises. Read more about our awards.
- Research or fact-finding work
- Be a mentor on MentorSET
- Write blogs/articles for the WES website, members’ area of WES website, blogs or journal
- Suggest links with other organisations links to be passed to Jacqui Hawkes at email@example.com
- Support your Cluster Co-ordinator by sitting on a cluster committee, help the organise an event, reach out to Members, support local members, work together on initiatives or networking in your local area
- Respond to press enquiries made to WES and speaking about an area of engineering or personal circumstance
Boards, committees and groups at WES are:
Board of Trustees
Member of a Director’s Committee - choose from Members, Events, Partners and Communications. New webpages for each Directors' Committees details of how to join coming soon!
Early Careers Board Member
University Groups Board Member
Join a student group at your university
Serve on the committee of your local cluster
WES also has ongoing positions held by individuals:
Student Liaison Officer - Jennifer Glover
Apprentice Liaison Officer - vacant
Cluster Co-ordinator Lead - Adriana Vargas-Colwill
Officer of a WES affiliated student group - Does your university have a student group?
Cluster Co-ordinator / Cluster Committee Member
Careers Advisor - Natalie Desty
Mentor with MentorSET - new scheme to open soon! Contact mentorset@Wes.org.uk for more information
We welcome Members suggesting initiatives to be organised under the WES brand, working to a proposal agreed by the WES office to ensure it meets WES core objectives, is measurable and achievable. These need to fully approved by staff who will consider any operational, insurance or legal considerations as well as cost. All work undertaken by volunteers must be done with oversight from staff and regular updates must be provided. All Members who volunteer for WES must sign a Volunteer Agreement and Confidentiality Agreement.
Examples of initiatives run by Members include a Work Shadowing Week, Scottish Schools Essay Competition, Lottie Tour and the production of a poster to inspire girls.
Please get in touch with Cath Heslop at firstname.lastname@example.org
It is likely that in your role as a volunteer with WES, particularly Cluster Co-ordinators, you will be approached by organisations looking to work more closely with WES. Please forward the contact details to the WES office, who will take the lead in further discussions. WES prides itself on working in partnership with other organisations to meet mutual objectives, and we are grateful for the connections we make via our members and volunteers.
As a membership organisation looking to promote networking amongst our members, we encourage Cluster Co-ordinators and Student Groups to create networking opportunities. Examples are:
- Arranging to meet members prior to attending a public event held by another organisation
- Factory tours or tours of other places of mutual interest
- Informal gathering at agreed venue
WES holds regional conferences organised by Cluster Co-ordinators with support from WES staff.
Please keep the Membership and Volunteers Manager informed of your plans.
Approval is required for events marketed to non-members.
If sufficient notice is received, events can be promoted in the WES enewsletter, social media and emails sent to members locally.
For insurance purposes, any events organised by WES Members where non-members are invited must have prior approval from WES staff via the submission of the relevant forms. A copy of this form can be requested from the WES Membership and Volunteers Manager.
Any organisation may host an event under the INWED brand without needing approval from WES. The purpose of INWED is to enable anyone to take part. WES promotes the day, provides guidance and collects statistics on who has taken part, but the events remain in the name of the organiser.
Dependent on the role of the volunteer, they may be issued with a WES email account or an email address that forwards emails to their personal email account. Whilst using the email address, the volunteer must adhere to GDPR legislation and follow instructions from the WES office with regards to the appropriate signature. Emails received by and/or sent from WES email accounts and addresses are not private and may be viewed by WES without notice.
Volunteers can claim for expenses incurred whilst volunteering for WES. Expenses must be pre-approved, within the WES Volunteer Expenses Policy (available at www.wes.org.uk/policies) and submitted within 90 days. Contact Operations Manager, Roz Hamilton, at email@example.com to seek approval for these expenses. You will then be advised how to submit your claim.
As a Membership Society, WES takes its responsibility for processing personal data seriously and complies with GDPR. All volunteers who come into contact with personal data will be provided with training.
We appreciate that from time to time our volunteers seek help from non-WES members in fulfilling some of their duties. We welcome any such support, but ask our volunteers to make the WES Membership and Volunteer Manager aware of this, and what the person will be doing, in advance.
Our responsibility to you as a volunteer for WES
- to introduce you to the way the organisation works and your volunteering role in it;
- to provide as much help as we can with the resources we have available;
- to provide regular communication with a main point of contact, (usually the Membership and Volunteers Manager) so that you can feedback your work to us and get help and support from us.
- to match your skills and interests with the right role for you wherever possible, listening to your motivations and aspirations;
- to celebrate success and recognise loyalty and dedication;
- to reimburse your pre-authorised travel costs within the agreed policy (please bear in mind that travel expenses should be kept to a minimum);
- to consult with you and keep you informed of possible changes to WES and your work within it;
- to insure you against injury according to our public liability insurance policy;
- to apply our equal opportunities policy to all volunteers; to apply our Complaints and Standards Policy if there are any problems;
- to provide you with the appropriate training and support for your role;
- to inform you of changes to policies or procedures that affect your role within WES; to encourage a positive and friendly atmosphere
Our expectations of you as a volunteer
- to consider your own personal health, safety and wellbeing, and the safety of those you are working with above all other priorities,
- to aim for high standards and work reliably and efficiently to the best of your ability, and to give as much warning as possible whenever you cannot deliver when expected;
- when representing WES you should ensure that the content of any talk or discussion falls within WES objectives. This is to ensure we comply with Charity Law;
- you must agree to the Code of Conduct for Members and WES Policy of Individual Memberships and Subscriptions
- agree to the WES Volunteer Confidentiality Agreement
- to follow WES’s rules, policies and procedures, including Health and Safety, Data Protection, Equal Opportunities, Safeguarding and Confidentiality Policy www.wes.org.uk/policies;
- to ensure that you keep the WES team informed of your volunteering activities;
- to always consider and protect the Women’s Engineering Society’s good reputation in your actions and conduct;
- to act responsibility and within the law;
- to let your contact at WES know when you have a problem so that we can work together to find a solution;
- to get involved and offer to support other volunteers if you can;
- to let staff know if there are changes in your personal circumstances that may affect your volunteering;