The UK Electronics Skills Foundation (UKESF) has launched a #TurnOnToElectronics initiative in the face of an increasingly large skills shortage.
The campaign’s goal is to encourage more young people into pursuing careers in the electronics sector.
Despite the UK having the world’s sixth largest Electronics sector (contributing towards 6% of UK’s GDP which is over £120 million per year), only 3,330 UK students enrolled in Electronic and Electrical Engineering degrees in 2017 according to UCAS. This is less than half the number enrolling in far more popular Mechanical Engineering degree courses.
The campaign’s sponsors include leading electronics organisations such as Arm, Dialog and Qualcomm. #TurnOnToElectronics already has 21 academic partners including the University of Cambridge, University of Southampton and Imperial College London.
Georgie Barrat, the Gadget Show presenter fronting the campaign, said: “Often incorrectly seen as one of the less glamorous STEM areas, studying Electronics can lead to an exciting and creative career, which enables students to make a real difference in the world. The UKESF is doing a fantastic job of encouraging more young people to study electronics and embark on a career in one of the world’s most important and dynamic industries.”
Stewart Edmondson, CEO of the UKESF, said: “The UK has a long heritage of technological innovation and a world-class electronics industry. Adding to that, our Government’s new industrial strategy emphasises the importance of AI, robotics and transportation in further boosting productivity and earning power throughout the UK. The aim of our campaign is to ensure that this hugely important industry isn’t consumed by a black hole caused by a lack of talent. We urge supporters to read our manifesto and pledge to help the campaign in any way they can!”
Professor Bashir Al-Hashimi CBE, Dean of the Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, University of Southampton, said: “The #TurnOnToElectronics campaign provides a dynamic, inclusive and original approach to increase awareness amongst 11-16 year-olds.”
Visit the #TurnOnToElectronics website for information and advice both for supporters and young people looking to get into the industry: http://www.turnontoelectronics.org/