Media release - 13/1/2009

Engineering Sets Example on Flexible Pathways to Professions

The Engineering and Technology Board (ETB) has welcomed the launch of the Government’s high level panel on social mobility in the professions and called for engineering to be included as an example of a sector in which there are many and varied flexible pathways into the profession.

This morning’s Government White Paper- New Opportunities: Fair chances for the future states the Government’s intention to set up a panel of professions Chaired by Alan Milburn MP to identify barriers to access into professional careers, and propose concrete actions to address them from both government and the professions themselves. The aim of such measures would be to increase social mobility and to ensure that employers can access a wider talent pool.

As the White Paper recognises, engineering provides an excellent example of a career in which it is possible to gain qualifications through a wide variety of Higher, Further and vocational education routes. Qualification to Eng Tech level and beyond can be achieved via apprenticeships, vocational courses, HNDs, and a variety of other flexible routes, so enabling employees of all social backgrounds to achieve senior positions of responsibility.

The White Paper cites the example of engineer Rachel Hoyle who took an engineering Apprenticeship with BAE systems leading to increased responsibilities and a Bachelor of Engineering Degree at Manchester Metropolitan University, demonstrating the excellent versatile career path engineering provides.
The White Paper also mentions the Government’s recent decision to create another 35,000 apprenticeships, and in doing so recognises their success as a flexible pathway to employment and progression.

Paul Jackson, Chief Executive of the ETB Said: “Engineering is an exciting, rewarding and varied career which offers a fantastic range of opportunities at all levels. The wide variety of flexible progression routes through to qualification as an engineer has ensured that engineers are setting a strong example on social mobility’.

“The new panel on social mobility would benefit greatly from close examination of engineering as an accessible and rewarding profession that offers young people of all social backgrounds a great start in working life.”
Notes to Editors

For further information please contact:
Laura Marsh, PR and Communications Manager EngineeringUK
Tel: 020 3206 0444 or (m) 07887 943 017