Businesses in the south east have teamed up with the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) for ‘Engineering for Tomorrow’, a one-off event aimed at promoting engineering opportunities in the region.
Claire Maycock, IMechE regional manager for the south east region, said: ‘It is vital that businesses across the region do everything they can to engage the next generation of engineers and develop the talent they already have.
‘We are lucky to have some really great companies in this area – companies who care about developing and training their staff. This event will be a great chance for these businesses to learn about some new ways to encourage potential engineers.’
One such initiative is the Engineering Technicians (EngTech) professional registration level launched by the IMechE last November. EngTech encourages apprentice engineers by offering them a structured professional development programme and formal recognition of their competences.
Qualified EngTechs find it easier to get promotion and earn a favourable wage while employers are assured that their workers are well-trained and possess recognised skills.
Another opportunity available to businesses in the region is the young apprentice programme run by West Sussex County Council. The scheme offers 14-16 year-old pupils 50 days of work-experience over a two-year period, the chance to study for a level-two qualification in their chosen vocation and the opportunity to link up with a mentor.
Lou Taylor, who works on the council’s programme, said: ‘Young people are generally not too aware of the great engineering opportunities available to them and the Young Apprentice scheme is excellent for raising awareness about the exciting companies right on their doorstep.
‘It offers the children a chance to learn by doing and encourages them to become engaged with engineering at a young age. Very soon these youngsters have to make important decisions about their future and by giving them the chance to see what engineering is all about we hope to inspire them to pursue a career in that area.’
Organised by IMechE, ‘Engineering for Tomorrow’ will take in Gatwick on March 18.