Abertay University: Abertay lecturer recognised for inspirational work with young civil engineers

Abertay University’s Dr Rebecca Wade has been named as the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) Scotland’s STEM Ambassador of the Year.

Dr Wade, a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science in the School of Applied Sciences, was recognised for inspiring the next generation of civil engineers to work with nature for a more sustainable future. She was praised for her ‘shining enthusiasm’ as a volunteer who visits schools and gives talks encouraging young people to consider civil engineering as a career.

Dr Wade said it was a great honour to receive the award and she would continue to work hard to address the gender imbalance in STEM subjects. She said:

“I hope that my enthusiasm and energy have inspired others to get into engineering, and to recognise the importance of working together with allied professions to deliver sustainable solutions. I have been impressed that in recent years the Institution of Civil Engineers and other professional bodies are engaging with the need to address the climate crisis, global biodiversity decline and social inequality. I have been working simultaneously with ICE, my employer, and in my other STEM outreach activities, to try to support the transition for organisations and individuals to a more equal and sustainable future. It really means a lot to be recognised for these efforts.”
Dr Wade represents Abertay on the Dundee Science Centre Board of Directors, on the Dundee and Angus Regional STEM partnership Board, The Dundee City Sustainability group and on the Tayside Climate Beacon Board. Active involvement in these networks helps Abertay to stay involved and engaged with local and regional STEM engagement efforts and promote education and careers in STEM.

ICE Scotland Director, Hannah Smith, said: “All our STEM Ambassadors do an amazing job of inspiring the next generation of civil engineers, which was why this was such a difficult decision to make.

“The judges felt it is clear Rebecca is very passionate about what she does, particularly by taking numerous routes to inspire young people. This is a well-deserved award and I would like to thank all our STEM Ambassadors for their efforts.”

Dr Wade’s STEM outreach work also saw her receive the 2022 Woman of Influence accolade from Action for Children Scotland. The award recognises remarkable women who have had an outstanding impact on society and are role models to the children, young people and families that the charity supports. Dr Wade is pictured below (middle) alongside Mollie Hughes (awarded ‘Woman to Watch) and Professor Linda Bauld (Special Recognition Award winner).

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