This week, 6-10 November, is Tomorrow’s Engineers Week – an initiative to engage young people to promote careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths). By building links between industry and schools, the aim is to close the skills gap in engineering and demonstrate how what young people learn at school is used in the real world.
Building such links and promoting STEM careers is something that The Welding Institute has been working on for a number of years through a dedicated educational outreach programme and other initiatives.
One example of this is a partnership with the Armourers and Brasiers Company, whose Materials Science Committee seeks to encourage an interest in science education, offering science project and equipment grants to primary and secondary schools as well as providing grants and awards, through The Welding Institute, to undergraduate and postgraduate students.
The Welding Institute also supports the professional and career progression of young people through the Younger Members’ Committee. While these younger members are supported through events and meetings (such as this week’s London branch event on 'The Materials Challenges of Rocket Engineering and Spaceflight'), the Young Member’s Committee also provides outreach to schools and colleges to encourage the next generation of engineering experts. These outreach programmes include the popular Welding with Chocolate demonstrations and other activities.
Aside from this, the Younger Members’ Committee supports postgraduates through monthly seminars for students linked with the National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC), while also presenting The Welding Institute’s biennial Richard Dolby – Rolls Royce prize, which awards young people for their work in welding, joining or materials engineering.
The Welding Institute will also be present at the National Engineering and Construction Recruitment (NECR) exhibition in Birmingham later this month to provide guidance to graduates as well as experienced technicians and engineers.
Aside from the work of The Welding Institute, TWI Ltd also engages in outreach work to encourage the next generation of industry experts. This work includes allying with schools, colleges and universities to offer summer placements and work experience, as well as offering tours of TWI facilities, attending careers fairs and STEM events and giving talks, workshops and presentations. Plus, looking forward, an increasing number of young people are using apprenticeships to learn on-the-job at TWI.
Sixth form students are also supported through the Arkwright Scholarships Trust, which allows top performing students the chance to develop connections and learn more about the uses of technology within industry. More recently, TWI joined the Cambridge LaunchPad programme to promote engineering and engage young minds in the local area.
You can find out more about Tomorrow’s Engineers week right here, or to find out more about The Welding Institute ongoing work to help promote STEM to the next generation, please contact us.