11 July 2011
Your shout: the best reader views from WM's mailbox
Engineering institutions need to do more to entice talented engineers who don't have degrees says one WM reader
Isn't it time our chartered institutions did a little more to help aspiring young engineers daunted by leaving university with fee debts of over £27,000.?
Way back in those sepia days when the Beatles were still making smash hits, it was possible to mount the first step of the ladder to full membership of Mechanicals or Civils by gaining HNC via day release and night school study.
The ladder was drawn up smartly with the move to chartered status. Now the only passport that really counts is an accredited degree.
The great thing about the HNC route was that it mixed practical, on-the-job learning with academic study. A youngster could join a local engineering business and progress, via ONC and HNC, plus one or two career hops, to the highest levels of the profession and IEng status.
You could argue that mix of practical and theory made for much more rounded engineers, trainees getting help from senior engineers with the trickier problems set at college.
It's been great to see apprenticeships getting lots more attention recently, but how about rebuilding a work-study-earn route for bright A-level students who fancy a high-level career as engineers but who are put off by the gate price of £27,000?
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