Students are calling for better work experience placements to help them inform their career choices
In collaboration with EngineeringUK, The Royal Academy of Engineering has launched a 10 point action plan in Parliament with the aim of inspiring future generations of engineers. Informed by students aged between 13 and 16 years old, the plan has been designed in response to the current lack of engineers which has created a skills shortage, with latest figures indication that there is annual demand for almost 125,000 engineers and a shortfall of close to 60,000.
Taster Days – a shorter version of work experience - allowing young people to see how diverse engineering can be, would help them make informed decisions when it comes to choosing GCSE and A Level options, and ultimately a career.
Research conducted by YouGov shows that the majority of students, a staggering 52%, are most likely to turn to Google for career inspiration, more so than their parents (41%) or their teachers (37%). This information has the plan calling for more career advice to be hosted on the Internet as well as a focused effort by the government and engineering industry to provide better and more accessible information about Further Education and career opportunities.
The Rt Hon Anne Milton MP, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister said:
“We are determined to boost engineering across the country. This year our Year of Engineering campaign is highlighting the amazing opportunities these fascinating subjects can give. Since becoming Minister for Skills and Apprenticeships I have been fascinated to see that engineering touches almost every aspect of our lives, from managing our environment, to sending satellites into space.”
Dr Hayaatun Sillem, CEO, Royal Academy of Engineering, comments:
“The action plan presented today outlines a number of recommendations for both businesses and government that would reduce the chronic skills and diversity shortfall that the engineering profession faces and help open the door for many more young people to careers that shape the future…”
The 10 point action plan was developed based on areas of common agreement between students following the Future Collective event in Manchester. Around 60 students, aged 13 to 16, attended the event at the Sharp Project to work with engineers in industries not usually associated with the sector on a series of interactive challenges.
Read the action plan
Read more on the RAEng website