Sierra Leone’s Ing. Trudy Morgan, Programme Director for the Hilton Freetown Cape Sierra Hotel, Vice President of the Sierra Leone Institution of Engineers, and co-founder of Sierra Leone Women Engineers, made history this week, when she was awarded Fellowship of the Institution of Civil Engineers (FICE), becoming the first woman in Africa to be recognised with the honour.
The Institution of Civil Engineers is one of the world's most respected professional engineering associations. Fellowship, its highest grade of membership, is reserved for civil engineers and technicians who've made a big contribution to the profession. Fellows and prospective fellows are often known and respected in the industry for their expertise.
Trudy says: I am excited and delighted to have attained the rank of Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers. This is an exciting time for women in engineering in Africa. Across the continent, we are finding our voice and are demonstrating that we can be at the forefront of infrastructural development in our various countries. We are combining our natural curiosity and nurturing instincts with technical know-how and competences to deliver solutions that meet the social and economic needs of both men and women in our society.
“As a believer in hard hats and lipstick, I hope that everyone will realise that from an early age, we should allow our children (boys and girls) to be the best they can be and not put anyone, especially our girls in a box. Yes, we are mothers, wives, nurses and teachers but we are also engineers, rocket scientists and neuro-physicists. Civil Engineering is an exciting career for women as it shapes the world we live in and as a believer in showing by doing, I hope I have demonstrated to numerous women and girls that engineering is a career for women too.”
Seán Harris, ICE Director of Membership, said: “Respected internationally, ICE Fellowship is our highest grade of membership and a benchmark for those practising at the top level within the profession. Trudy deserves recognition for her exceptional engineering achievements and for acting as a beacon to other aspiring female engineers across Sierra Leone and Africa. ICE is proud to celebrate her continued contribution to the profession and commends her commitment to making society a safer and fairer place to live.”
Only two other Sierra Leoneans have achieved the distinction of ICE Fellowship. These are Professor Koso-Thomas – former head of a unified Department of Engineering of the University of Sierra Leone, from 1962 until the department attained the status of a faculty in 1976, and later Vice Chancellor of the university; and Ing. Alpha Savage - a professional Civil Engineer with over 30 years of experience in the engineering and construction industries nationally and internationally.
FICE by numbers:
• ICE has 92,000 members worldwide. • In total, the Institution has 5,236 Fellows. • Only 4% of these are women. • Only 1.43% of ICE Fellows are in Africa