The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has today announced that an additional £1.2 million is being invested by the IET and its partners in the UK’s up and coming engineering talent over the next five years, with further investment expected.
The IET Diamond Jubilee Scholarship scheme is now in its second year, and follows the £2 million figure that the IET has already invested last year. The scholarships will provide each winner with at least £1,000 per academic year. Winners will also benefit from mentoring and work experience placements through the IET’s extensive networks, in an attempt to close the ever growing skills gap which has increased for the ninth year running*.
This year, sixty-nine scholarships have been awarded to students who started either a Masters or an Undergraduate engineering degree at a UK based university in the autumn of 2014, and nearly half of these have been awarded to female candidates (42%) up from just 19% of scholarships which were given to female applicants last year. Currently, just 6% of the UK’s engineering work force is female**.
William Webb, IET President commented: “The number of women in the engineering work force is appallingly low, so we are really pleased that so many young women are making use of the financial help that is available via our scholarships.
He continued: “However, it’s not just women we need – it has been estimated that approximately 87,000 new engineers will be needed each year until 2020 to address the current skills shortage. It has never been more important to encourage young people to study engineering so that they are able to follow rewarding careers and, ultimately, protect the UK’s economic prosperity.”
The investment is being made in collaboration with the Belling Charitable Settlement, the ERA Foundation and The Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851, Siemens and BAE Systems.
Stephanie Morton, Entry Level Talent Lead at Siemens adds: “We are so pleased to be part of this investment – it’s crucial to encourage young people to think about engineering and we really hope that these scholarships will help. It is true that a good degree alone is not enough for many of our engineering roles, and we are hoping that interaction with an organisation such as the IET during their degree will eliminate this risk.”
The IET Diamond Jubilee Scholarship programme is open to all UK students hoping to achieve 3 ‘A’s at A Level, 3 ‘A’ grade Advanced Highers, 5 ‘A’ grade Highers or an International Baccalaureate Diploma at 36 points or above and who are applying to join an IET accredited engineering or technology degree course. Those who are selected receive at least £1,000 per year during their studies.
Prospective students who are wishing to apply for a Diamond Jubilee Scholarship can apply online soon. See www.theiet.org/diamond.