Helen Link, Jo Withford & Renny Chivunga

Helen Link, Jo Withford & Renny Chivunga
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Helen Link, Jo Withford & Renny Chivunga

Engineers Australia

EdTalk: Women in STEM – Engineering
EdTalk Video Link


Engineers Australia recognises fewer and fewer females are taking up STEM subjects at school. Within the engineering sector, only about 12% of engineers are females. We undertake several activities across NSW to encourage females to consider engineering as a career.

This workshop aims to inspire female students into engineering by highlighting the work female engineers can do, career path options and opportunities available to them. Several female engineers will discuss what got them interested in engineering, their journey and why they have remained in the profession. They will discuss career highlights and talk about unusual projects they have undertaken.


Narrator: Helen Link, GM Engineers Australia Newcastle Division

Speaker bios: 

Jo Withford 

With over 25 years of road and bridge construction experience, Jo has a strong knowledge of and experience in project planning, construction, maintenance, and project management. Jo commenced her career in the construction industry before heading into the design of pre-stressed concrete structures. She currently works at TfNSW where she has spent the past 20 years building and maintaining road and bridge infrastructure, as well as project managing multiple infrastructure projects, across the Hunter Region. She has dedicated a lot of her own time to raise awareness of the importance of females in STEM roles.

Renny Chivunga

Renny is a chemical engineer, pilot, model and fitness instructor.  Having held positions within mineral processing RND, water planning and wastewater treatment, she now works as a water network engineer at Hunter Water.  She is on Engineers Australia Division Committee and Vice-Chair for Women in Engineering, a Board and Panel member for both Newcastle University Chemical Engineering and Constructions management Disciplines.  In 2018 she was nominated for the Zimbabwe Achievers Awards – Female Community Champion.  In 2019 she successfully led a team of water professionals to win regional awards in WaterAid’s Winnovator Challenge.