Britain needs more engineers

  • Survey of 1000 13-16 year olds reveals less than 20% had considered a career in engineering – although engineering is considered a more popular career choice than banking
  • Just 8% of girls would consider engineering as a career, compared to 29% of boys
  • Nearly a quarter of those surveyed said maths and physics taught at school was ‘dull’
  • Large regional variations – 33% of those surveyed in the North East had considered engineering, compared to 16% in the East Midlands and just 14% in the South East
  • Jaguar Land Rover continues to promote engineering and technology amongst young people to address shortfall in future engineering talent within the UK

Jaguar logoJaguar Land Rover (JLR) today called for more young people to consider careers in engineering and technology, as a new survey revealed that engineering remains a minority interest among UK teenagers.

As JLR plans to engage with thousands of young people at ‘The Big Bang’ science and engineering fair at the NEC in Birmingham tomorrow, it published results of a new survey of 1000 13-16 year olds which discovered that less than 20% had considered a career in engineering.

JLR Executive Director Mike Wright said: “The success of our global business – and the UK economy –lies in engineering and innovation. JLR has ambitious plans for growth and this can only be supported by innovation in new products, engines and environmental technologies. We are the UK’s leading investor in automotive research and development and we are successfully delivering breakthroughs in engineers, performance and sustainability.

“However, it’s critical that we attract talented young people to become the next generation of engineers and technologists. We have a wide range of educational initiatives underway with the aim of getting young people excited about engineering and crucially, to encourage them to make the right subject choices at GCSE-level and beyond.”

JLR has a well-established programme of educational initiatives to promote STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths) within schools and colleges to help create the next generation of engineers and technologists. In 2011, JLR reached out to more than 233,000 children.

This year, JLR is a lead sponsor of The Big Bang – the UK’s largest celebration of science and technology for young people.

The company’s stand is packed full of exciting and stimulating exhibits aimed at highlighting the excitement of engineering. This includes a fully immersive future technology simulator, a demonstration on how driver/car connectivity in the future will make the driving experience simpler and safer, a virtual car airflow analysis and Jaguar C-X75 concept car virtual race demonstrating vehicle dynamics. The stunning Jaguar C-X75 and Land Rover DC100 concept vehicles will also be showcased on the stand. A group of 110 Jaguar Land Rover graduates will be leading school groups around the event whilst engineers and apprentices will be on-hand on the stand to talk about the exhibits and their career experiences.

JLR Engineering Director, Bob Joyce said: “As our survey reveals, the UK needs to do more to make science and technology the number one career choice for our young people. We now employ more than 6,000 engineers, designers and technologists in the UK, and the search is on for more talented young people to join that team.  It’s a really exciting time to be an engineer, and it’s vital for the UK that today’s school students consider engineering as a desirable career to follow.”