13 Sep 2019
Royal Academy of Engineering highlights that misconceptions about engineers and lack of understanding of the profession means young people are missing opportunities to make a difference to our world.
Engineering could be one of the most poorly understood STEM careers, with new research showing that over three quarters (76%) of young people aged 11 – 19 do not know a lot about what those working in engineering do2– and this could have far-reaching implications for all of us.
Indeed, according to the World Economic Forum, there are many engineering roles that will be crucial in positively shaping our future society and protecting our environment. However, the UK has an annual shortfall of up to 59,000 engineers3 every year, and research shows that the majority of young people aged 11 – 19 ‘probably or definitely’ do not want to become an engineer (52%).
Their parents need support in developing a greater understanding of engineering as well: 72% of parents do not know a lot about what people working in the profession do, and yet 63% of 11 – 16-year olds would consider going to their parents for careers advice.