If you are at the age where you’ve got to decide what career you might like to do in the future, what about engineering? There are plenty of options, through apprenticeship and degree routes, although as you probably need convincing, here are a few good reasons:
There are so many job vacancies out there that Sir James Dyson is creating his own university to address the skills gap. Indeed, Britain produces 12,000 engineering graduates a year, while there are currently 54,000 vacancies.
Once you’ve embarked on your engineering career there are many routes for you to go down which will help you grow and develop your career and skills. As engineering sectors themselves change and evolve, you’ll find lifelong employment, without doing the same thing for 10 years and a career that keeps you on your toes through continuous learning and refreshing of your knowledge.
Furthermore, if you’re someone wanting to travel and explore the world, what better than an engineering degree? Many engineering organisations offer the opportunity to explore other countries and cultures through attending conferences or inspecting company facilities, while an engineering qualification is respected abroad and the skills you acquire means they are applicable and wanted if you are looking to apply for a job internationally.
Even if you choose not to become an engineer, an engineering degree or apprenticeship gives you the chance to develop a wide range of technical and soft skills, such as problem solving and decision making. On completion of your course you’ll be raring to go with job applications and offers, as engineering degrees are highly valuable and sought after.
The starting salaries are among the best across all industry sectors, especially as the demand for skilled engineers outstrips supply and businesses are struggling to find recruits for vacancies. Rolls-Royce’s Foundation Degree Apprenticeship offers a starting salary of £12,354 a year while their Graduate Scheme offers a starting salary of £28,000.
Explore your passions
As engineering is such a broad field, you can easily encompass your interests and passions into your work. First of, you’ve got the choice of the four main engineering routes of Civil, Electrical, Mechanical or Chemical, alongside a General Engineering pathway, but there are plenty more niche routes that might take your fancy. What about Artificial Intelligence, Cyber Security, Sustainable Energy or Biotech Engineering as a degree?
And secondly, there are plenty of world-wide problems for you to solve alongside designers, scientists and business people – what about being involved in developing bionic limbs for disabled citizens or baby warmers for those freezing in the developing world? Or you could apply your talents to cutting-edge technology, helping bring augmented reality to the masses or getting the first citizens into space with Virgin Galactic.
Use your creativity
You’ll need a ton of creativity to work alongside others to confront these challenges and finding the best solution. But with a constantly changing engineering environment, and a promising career path, if you are curious about how things work and want to apply what you learn to solve real world problems, engineering is the perfect avenue for your talents.