UK Prime Minister announces initiative to create 100,000 Engineering Technicians

27 June 2013
IET Communications team
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Announcement of EngTech initiative at 10 Downing Street on 24 June

Dr Tony Whitehead (centre), with IET apprentice and technician members Freddie Abbott-Howes and Ashok Hemmings (Rolls-Royce) and Patrick O’Leary and Seth Roose (NG Bailey).

Partnership between the IET, IMechE and ICE aims to increase pool of technical skills.

As previously reported on Member News online, a partnership has been formed between the IET, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), with support from the Gatsby Foundation, to drive the expansion of registered Engineering Technicians.

The initiative, which aims to help create 100,000 registered Engineering Technicians by 2018, was officially launched by the UK Prime Minister, the Rt Hon David Cameron MP, on 24 June.

In attendance at 10 Downing Street was IET director of policy Dr Tony Whitehead, who said: “Increasing the pool of home grown technical skills in the UK is good for our economy and good for individuals.

"The pace of technological development in the modern workplace is creating an urgent and growing demand for higher levels of technical skill and professionalism. This initiative will help to meet the need to up-skill and increase the pool of home grown talent.

"More Engineering Technicians in the workforce will help us to maintain a competitive edge and boost growth in the UK economy through innovation and creativity.”

Working through new and established apprentice schemes, the initiative aims to create 100,000 Engineering Technicians by giving them structured on-the-job experience built upon a recognised academic qualification. On successful completion of their apprenticeships, and by ensuring the appropriate skills and competencies are reached, each apprentice will be able to attain globally recognised professional registration.

The initiative has been created in response to the emerging skills gap in the engineering and construction sectors.

Current estimates suggest that the UK needs to double the pipeline of new recruits into engineering, construction and manufacturing professions by 2020 to avoid a severe skills shortage, which could inhibit the growth of these vital UK sectors.

For more information on Engineering Technician professional registration, please visit www.theiet.org/engtech.