McLaren Automotive scientist and engineer Ella Podmore has been crowned the Young Woman Engineer of the Year by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET).
The prestigious industry award celebrates women working in modern engineering to challenge negative perceptions and encourage greater diversity in the profession.
“I am absolutely honoured to have been chosen by the IET and the judges to be this year’s winner,” said Podmore. “Those who know and work with me recognise how passionate I am about my science and, being able to talk about that and the amazing supercars I get to work on at McLaren, I want to encourage the next generation of engineers and scientists to push the boundaries of what’s possible.”
Involved in all material investigations, from first-drawings through to the final product, Podmore has worked on the McLaren 765LT, the Elva roadster and the recently revealed McLaren Artura, the first series-production, high-performance hybrid from the luxury, high-performance supercar company.
Podmore joined McLaren Automotive as an intern engineer in 2016, having completed a degree in materials engineering at the University of Manchester before securing a full-time role two years later.
Since then she has progressed rapidly, creating her department from the ground-up and balancing her time between experiments and leading technical meetings.
As one of more than 100 McLaren STEM ambassadors, Podmore is passionate about encouraging more young people of all ages to take up science, technology and maths careers.
As well as talking to young people around the world about her role, last year Ella was one of McLaren’s expert judges on the BBC Blue Peter ‘Supercar of the Future’ children’s design competition. Since then, she has participated in the global reveal of the Artura and featured in a film to mark the launch of the LEGO Technic McLaren Senna GTR model, the real version on which she worked.
As well as highlighting female engineering talent, the Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards identifies role models who can help address the UK science and engineering skills crisis by promoting engineering careers to more women.