Changing perceptions with Tomorrow’s Engineers 2014

Posted on 4 Nov 2014 by Victoria Fitzgerald

Tomorrow’s Engineers Week (#TEWeek14) takes place from 3-7 November 2014 and aims to change perceptions of engineering among young people (focusing on 11-14s), their parents and teachers.

The week celebrates the everyday engineering heroes that design, create and innovate to improve our lives.

Launched by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) in 2013 in partnership with the engineering community, the first Tomorrow’s Engineers Week involved over 70 engineering organisations, 65 events or local activities and over 200 schools.

To coincide with the event, EEF has released its five key facts emphasizing the importance of the event.

  • Manufacturers are crying out for young talent: 66% plan to recruit an engineering graduate in the next three years and 66% plan to recruit an engineering apprentice in the next 12 months
  • Opportunity to earn: the average engineering apprentice earns £7.03 per hour just to train, while the average engineering graduate earns a fifth more than other graduates
  • Rules of attraction: 72% of manufacturers say raising awareness of apprenticeships  will encourage more young people into manufacturing – 63% say the same of STEM-promoting initiatives between schools and business
  • Careers advice: six in ten (60%) say better-informed careers advice at school will encourage more into manufacturing
  • Skills shortages facing manufacturers: four in five are struggling to recruit – over two-thirds (69%) say this is because candidates lack technical skills, while 48% do not have enough applicants to fill job roles.

Verity O’Keefe, employment and skills policy adviser at EEF, says: “Tomorrow’s Engineers Week is a golden opportunity to rekindle realistic and achievable career aspiration in the young.

“By making it clear that our sector has plenty of interesting jobs available, pays well and offers good long-term career prospects, we will be ticking many of the boxes for young people and their parents.

“The fact is that our sector has struggled with an image problem and this has left it lagging behind in the race to attract talent.

“It’s vital that young people are now given an accurate and up-to-date picture of the wealth of opportunities on offer.

“The ongoing skills shortage, higher than average pay and the fact that manufacturing is leaping up the Government and public agenda, makes this a key time to reach out to young people and ensure they understand how and why they should get involved.”