A programme to increase the employment prospects of engineering graduates from diverse backgrounds is set to return in August.
The Royal Academy of Engineering’s Graduate Engineering Engagement Programme (GEEP) targets university engineering students and has reached over 800 students from 66 universities since it was launched in 2015.
Of the students already involved in the programme 28 per cent are female and over 90 per cent are from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds. To date, GEEP has resulted in at least 250 engineering employment opportunities.
RAEng says it works with over a dozen engineering employers to provide students with training and networking opportunities that will help and encourage them to apply for engineering jobs.
The programme launches again on 19 August with a series of virtual events that include workshops, interview and assessment centre training, and insight sessions led by engineers. Each event includes a speed networking session for students to meet engineering recruiters. Companies confirmed to support the scheme include AMEY, Buro Happold, National Grid, Network Rail, Rolls-Royce, Siemens, Teledyne e2v and WSP.
GEEP has been developed in partnership with engineering employers and is delivered by SEO London, with support from the Association for Black and Minority Ethnic Engineers (AfBE-UK) and the Women’s Engineering Society (WES). GEEP targets engineering undergraduates who are female or from socially disadvantaged or BAME backgrounds with a focus on universities outside the Russell Group.
Research carried out by RAEng found 60% of white engineering graduates employed in engineering occupations after six months, compared with 40% for BAME graduates. Following a successful three-year pilot, GEEP launched as a full-scale programme in 2018 and it was named winner of the Race Equality Award 2019 at Business in the Community’s Responsible Business Awards.
GEEP participant Damilola Fari-Arole, who is now a Systems and RAM Engineer at Network Rail, says: “The support I received from attending the programme was incredibly beneficial in my applications and interview processes. The programme gave me an opportunity to expand my network within the industry and gain valuable insight into some of the top engineering firms — allowing me to make informed choices when applying for roles in the industry.
“Through GEEP, I eventually secured a graduate engineering job in Network Rail. I would highly recommend GEEP to engineering students and recent graduates who are looking to gain engineering opportunities, but also would encourage engineering firms alike, to get involved to access and attract top emerging talent into the industry.”
Students interested in attending the next series of GEEP events can apply here and engineering companies interested in the programme can contact Rachel Earnshaw (Rachel.Earnshaw@raeng.org.uk)