A CIRENCESTER student is heading to the Women in Property national awards in September.

Robyn Dearden, who studies Rural Land Management at the Royal Agricultural University, will be one of two South West representatives at the awards, having already won a regional prize.

Negative publicity around the gender pay gap and a reputation as a male-dominated industry, run the risk of putting off young girls who might otherwise consider a career in property and construction.

Industry organisation, Women in Property, are keen to encourage more women into the sector, citing a healthy pipeline of new talent, a flexible working environment and inspirational female role models as critical to this challenge.

Speaking at the Women in Property South West Student Awards, chairman Carly Willis said: “As an industry we need to nurture our talent pool and provide a platform to boost our rising stars into the property and construction sector.

“Women in Property runs a number of different initiatives to encourage young women to explore the rewarding and diverse range of careers available within our industry.

“The Women in Property Student awards is one of them and has now been running an amazing 12 years. It gives us as an organisation fantastic engagement with the students, universities, and employers who are looking to engage with the talent of the next generation.

“Our programme puts the students in the position to challenge themselves, recognise the own abilities, really stand out and most importantly become ‘role models’ for the next generations and others around them. We want to get behind them and offer our support as they are our future leaders.”

Delighted by her regional award success, Robyn said: “I am so honoured to have received this prestigious award and would like to thank the team at Women in Property for all their support.

“I am proud to represent young women aspiring to build careers in the rural property sector and am excited to take part in the national awards on behalf of the South West.”