‘Four in 10 parents believe kids will not consider engineering career’
14 Dec 2020
Almost 40% of parents polled in a survey of more than 1,300 parents say their children will not consider a career in engineering.
Educational charity The Smallpeice Trust concluded that many parents regard engineering as “too academic” for their child.
Despite the lead role played by STEM industries in tackling the ongoing challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and growing demand for new talent, few young people currently see the occupation as a viable choice.
Some parents cited the supposed “grimy” nature of engineering for deterring their daughters, with others saying their child was “too thick”, “not capable enough” or did not enjoy STEM subjects.
A small proportion of parents believed that their child’s learning difficulties or autism would act as a potential barrier.
CEO of The Smallpeice Trust Dr Kevin Stenson said:
“It is clear that the industry still has a long way to go in terms of widening accessibility for people from all backgrounds – irrespective of gender or academic ability.
“No child should feel that they are not smart or able enough to pursue a career in engineering. Having more visible engineering role models from diverse backgrounds is the key to raising aspirations in STEM amongst young people.
He pointed out that UK engineering currently has a deficit of two million people but extensive education was needed across schools for pupils, teachers and families to counter prejudices about the sector.