16 August 2012
As around 335,000 students in England, Wales and Northern Ireland received their A Level results today, a leading engineers’ body says that if we are to turn around the economy, we must ensure more students study STEM subjects.
The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) says that an extra 200,000 engineering professionals will be needed by 2020. Currently, the UK is only producing 25 to 50 per cent of the engineering graduates that the economy needs.
Stephanie Fernandes, IET Principal Policy Advisor for Education and Skills said: “Whilst entries for STEM subjects have risen, it is important that young people continue their studies into higher education; the country needs more people studying science and engineering subjects at university and taking up jobs in this sector.
“We are at risk of stifling economic growth if we do not encourage more students to study STEM subjects which are crucial to increase the output of UK plc.”
There is huge demand for engineers. The IET’s skills survey for 2012 shows that over the next year, 58 per cent of companies are planning to recruit, compared to just 36 per cent in 2011.