2018 to be the Year of Engineering

Posted on 15 Jan 2018 by Jonny Williamson

The Year of Engineering 2018, which will see government and industry tackle a major skills gap and inspire the engineers of tomorrow, is being officially launched today by Anne Milton.

The Year of Engineering 2018 is designed to change perceptions about engineering, and it aims to encourage more people from diverse backgrounds to take up careers in the sector.

Later this morning, the Minister of State for Skills and Apprentice, Anne Milton, will officially kick-off the year with a visit to the National College for Digital Skills.

Milton said: “I want to see everyone whatever their background, wherever they live to have a chance to get a rewarding career or job in engineering whether they come via a technical or academic route.

“The Year of Engineering gives us a great opportunity to work together with business to inspire a new generation of world class engineers. We want to build the science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills that we need for a growing economy, as highlighted in the government’s Industrial Strategy.”

As reported, ministers from across government are joining forces with engineers, industry experts and hundreds of businesses to change perceptions around engineering – and highlight the scale of opportunity that careers in the industry hold for young people in the UK.

The Year of Engineering 2018 and will see a national drive in all corners of the country to inspire the young people who will shape our future.According to the government, engineering is one of the most productive sectors in the UK, but a shortfall of 20,000 engineering graduates every year is damaging growth.

There is also widespread misunderstanding of engineering among young people and their parents and a lack of diversity in the sector – the workforce is 91% male and 94% white.

The new campaign is aimed at filling those gaps and changing misconceptions, and will see government and around 1,000 partners deliver a million inspiring experiences of engineering for young people, parents and teachers.

Activities will include:

  • a Siemens See Women roadshow aimed at inspiring women, including more black, Asian and minority ethnic girls, into pursuing STEM careers
  • a brand new children’s book on engineering from Usborne
  • the Science Museum and London Transport Museum will be capturing children’s imaginations with interactive exhibitions
  • schools will get the chance to go behind the scenes at Airbus to meet engineers working on the Mars Rover
  • Thales in the UK will be inspiring inventors of the future with robot clubs in primary schools
  • Sir James Dyson, through the Dyson Institute, the James Dyson Foundation and the James Dyson Award, will continue to invest in inspiring young engineers by providing opportunities to apply engineering principles to projects that solve real world problems

To find out more, visit the Year of Engineering website.

The Engineering Development Trust (EDT) is one of the partners for the Year of Engineering.

 It’s chief Executive, Julie Feest commented: “The Year of Engineering is challenging false ideas about engineering. EDT works to make sure that even young people early in their school careers start learning the skills in engineering, science and technology that they will need in the future and receive the information that they need about careers in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which will be in full swing as they come to working age.

“Successful careers will increasingly rely on a breadth of expertise as different disciplines are required to co-operate to create new products and services that have not even been thought of yet. It may well be that in-depth knowledge of narrow subject areas becomes less prized as artificial intelligence becomes able to take over such roles.

“In that event, creative skills may also be part of the package so that an emphasis on blended learning within science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths studies – known as STE(A)M – will be the way for the future.”