The Engineering e2e programme achieving its goal of 500+ engineering graduates per year by 2017 a year early will be welcome news for industry, says Minister of Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Paul Goldsmith.
“It’s very pleasing to see all the hard work by Engineering e2e, Futureintech, tertiary institutions, engineering professional organisations and others has really paid off,” Mr Goldsmith says.
The Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) has confirmed 511 graduates from priority engineering courses in 2016, a full year ahead of schedule, for a total of 2,151 graduates in 2016. Set up by the Government in 2014, the Engineering – Education to Employment (e2e) initiative promotes engineering as a career to students.
“Engineering e2e’s successful public awareness campaign has already lifted the profile of engineering from 10th to 3rd place in potential student’s career considerations.
“More than 500 additional graduates each year is a step in the right direction though we still have quite a bit of work to do to address the balance of graduates across Diploma of Engineering (Level 6), Bachelor of Engineering Technology (Level 7) and Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) (Level 8) qualifications.
“Our big challenge, supported by employer feedback, is growing enrolments at institutes of technology, which specialise in level 6 and 7 qualifications,” Mr Goldsmith says.
“So I am pleased to see Engineering e2e is working closely with the ITP sector, and with engineering professional bodies to really focus on employer engagement to grow the pipeline of work-ready engineers.”
Engineering e2e has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (IPWEA) and IPWEA is collaborating with e2e on its sponsored degrees pilot programme which is being funded by the TEC.
Sponsored degrees would enable both on-the-job training and the completion of a Level 7 qualification in engineering, like the Bachelor of Engineering (Technology), and are particularly relevant for rapidly changing, high-tech industries.
“Engineers help build the infrastructure that makes up our modern world. New Zealand needs more engineers to meet the growing demand for construction and infrastructure, and this Government is focussed on meeting those challenges into the future,” says Mr Goldsmith.