Engineers warn education reforms could increase skills gap

The
Engineering Employers’ Federation has warned that the reforms to higher
education announced by Charles Clarke today could exacerbate the sector’s
skills shortages.

The
EEF warned that the introduction of differential fees for universities and
courses could have the unintended effect of deterring students from studying
engineering and add to the shortfall of talented graduates in the industry.

Martin
Temple, director general at the EEF said he recognised higher education was
suffering from years of under investment, and that increased fees should form
part of an improved funding system. But he added that the Government should be
making science and engineering degrees more attractive because of the shortfall
in talent.

He
said many engineering degrees were expensive to deliver, and if universities
decided to charge according to cost it could deter students and could have
serious consequences for the future.

www.eef.org.uk

By
Ross Wigham

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