“Reports of a graduate engineer shortage are common yet competition for jobs remains fierce.” Whether you are working with school kids who are considering a career in engineering or with current undergraduates trying to access the job market, this mixed message is undoubtedly very confusing. What side of the story do we believe? How can both sides of the argument exist? The Engineer (www.theengineer.co.uk) has produced a great article which can help us to not only understand the complexities of this problem but also consider some of the solutions that have been put forward by their roundtable of industry experts. The full article can be viewed here.
Whilst it is clear from what is written that it is a particular type of engineering firm that is currently struggling to fill vacancies – the rural, the niche, the SME – the worry is that in the future, unless university places are expanded, a great many more engineering firms will also start feeling the effects. The government is continuing to pour money in to STEM promotion at school level, but isn’t it time more money was also invested into the HE sector?