Lancashire based engineer Sophie Harker has picked up a prestigious award at a BAE Systems event celebrating engineering excellence. The annual ‘Bee Beamont’ Award is presented annually and recognises newly qualified engineers who have made an outstanding contribution to the business in the early stages of their career.
In her current role Sophie assesses the aerodynamic properties and performance characteristics of future concept military aircraft. In the last five years Sophie has amassed an impressive list of qualifications and awards including gaining a 2:1 Masters in Mathematics; becoming BAE Systems Technical Graduate of the Year 2016; being awarded Graduate of the Year 2017 by the Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies Alliance (SEMTA); and featuring in The Telegraph’s Top 50 Women in Engineering in the same year.
Receiving her award Sophie said “It’s a real honour to be recognised by the Company in this way. It’s great to be part of an event that celebrates the great engineering skills we have in the UK and I’ll use this award to help me keep inspiring others.”
A highlight in Sophie’s career to date came during her time on the company graduate scheme when she became the first graduate to undertake an external placement with Reaction Engines, the Oxford-based company which is pioneering the next generation of hypersonic and space access propulsion, and in which BAE Systems has invested. BAE Systems is collaborating with Reaction Engines s on the development of SABRE™ – a new aerospace engine class that combines both jet and rocket technologies with the potential to revolutionise hypersonic flight and the economics of space access. Having always dreamed of being an astronaut, Sophie continues to work closely with Reaction Engines to help drive forward ideas and opportunities in space technology.
Ian Muldowney, Engineering Director for BAE Systems Air said “Sophie’s passion and enthusiasm for the aerospace industry is clear. She has achieved so much in such a short space of time and is truly inspirational in her attitude and efforts to inspire others. Her achievements are outstanding for someone who, at 26 years of age, is only beginning their career.”
Sophie extends her commitment to engineering as a STEM ambassador for the company and represents both the company and women in engineering at events and conferences worldwide. With 2018 being designated as The Year of Engineering in the UK, Sophie is keen to continue sharing her story and promoting engineering to improve understanding of what engineers do and the difference they make to people’s lives.