New report marks launch of Top Manufacturing and Engineering Talent 2030 campaign
The Council for Industry and Higher Education (CIHE) has published a report to mark the launch its latest campaign, Talent 2030. Great Expectations concludes that building a solid manufacturing and engineering base is essential to the UK’s economic recovery.
The campaign is being led by Aaron Porter former President of NUS and David Willetts, the Minister of State for Universities and Science. Speaking at the launch the co-chair of the Talent 2030 Taskforce, Richard Greenhalgh, said: “The UK is doing well in terms of the number of engineering graduates it has, better than the US, but we need better career advice for young people, we should not be embarrassed that university is a route into a well paid career and we need to encourage more work experience.”
Initially, the campaign will focus on attracting more girls to careers in engineering and manufacturing and rectify the gender bias by guiding the appropriate choice of A-level and GCSE subjects. Statistics produced by the CIHE report show that 26 per cent of women are currently doing a relevant degree and would be willing to consider entering these jobs, while just 12 per cent were decided on entering the profession. More worryingly, 2 in 5 of girls surveyed in the penultimate year of university said they could be persuaded to take up such a career, but were now not doing the right degrees.
The report proposes that universities promote internships in all manufacturing and engineering courses and business commits to supporting a major manufacturing and engineering mentoring scheme, particularly aimed at girls before they reach 14.
Philip Greenish, Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Engineering, added: “The Great Expectations report demonstrates that the UK will only continue to be in the business of producing high added value goods and services if we start planning now. Currently we struggle to recruit women into engineering and this is denying us the diverse perspectives that produce genuinely fresh thinking. We need new ways of attracting the best talent into engineering - both women and men.”