Why would a young person consider to be an Engineer when most of the time, all you see on TV or social media is famous people who make their riches by performing, singing, playing sports, etc.?
Have you ever seen a Scientist or Engineer headlining an advert for a perfume or clothes brand?
However, the chances are that there were a number Engineers and Scientists somewhere along the way who helped create the perfume or manufacture the clothing or the sport equipment.
From an early age, children often hear sentences such as, “maths is too difficult”, “I was never good at science” and so on. These phrases have been heard so many times, that it is “the norm” for a child to say any of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths) subjects are too difficult, it is almost surprising when you hear a child say otherwise.
These are some of the reasons why, when you ask a 10 year old child what they want to be when they grow up, the chances of the answers being an Engineer or a Scientist is likely to be rare.
So are we as engineers a dying breed? Well apparently not!
According to the Engineering UK report in 2018, young people’s interest in Engineering has actually grown from 40% in 2013 to 51% in 2017.
However, the older the pupils become, the less likely they are to consider Engineering as a career choice.
So as Engineers, what can we do to help increase these numbers?
One of the recommendations by Engineering UK is for the engineering community to “ensure young people have a full understanding of the excitement and variety a career in Engineering offers, and the potential contribution they can make as an Engineer. This is a responsibility that falls on every Engineer and Engineering company.”
At Sudlows, we pride ourselves on being one of these Engineering companies. Sudlows commitment to encouraging the next generation of Engineers, who may be looking at a career in the exciting world of Data Centres, means we have been involved in a number of outreach programmes, such as sponsoring the Lancashire Science Festival – engaging with over 20,000 visitors and over 6,000 secondary schools. In addition to these outreach initiatives, Sudlows also provide apprenticeship opportunities to over 10 of apprentices each year.
We also have an STEM ambassador who regularly takes part in various activities to encourage pupils of different ages to consider STEM subjects, throughout the year.