Feeds

Slash tuition fees for STEM students, biz boss body begs UK.gov

Fresh meat needed stat to fill 'skilled technician' shortage

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) is demanding that the government take action on the skills shortage in tech and engineering, proposing lower tuition fees for courses and new training for existing workers.

The CBI said that a survey it conducted with survey haus Pearson last year showed that 42 per cent of companies were facing difficulties recruiting people with STEM skills and knowledge and wants the government to do more to encourage people into the sector.

The organisation is proposing that the government come up with a way to reduce tuition fees on STEM university courses, as well as developing a catch-up course for 18-year-olds who'd left STEM subjects at GCSE level but wanted to do a related degree.

It also wants to see further apprenticeships to develop in-demand skills as well as retraining opportunities for older employees and gender diversity targets at sixth-form colleges and universities to get more women in the field.

"Growth and jobs in the future will depend on the UK having a workforce that can exploit new technologies and discoveries. The growing skills vacuum is threatening the recovery, as demand from firms is outstripping supply," said Katja Hall, chief policy director at the CBI.

“The government must explore if it’s possible to reduce the costs of some of these courses and create a one-year crossover qualification at 18 for those who turned away from science and maths after GCSEs, but now want to take a related degree.

“But it is increasingly clear that the really problematic shortages are at skilled technician level. We do have to play a long game on skills, creating more apprenticeships, but we also need policies for the short-term, including retraining existing workers with in-demand skills in key sectors.”

In a new report, "Engineering our Future", the CBI argues that key economic areas are facing a "skills crunch" and encouraging people, particularly women, into STEM qualifications is vital to the economy.

"As the economy rebalances towards manufacturing, investments and exports, major growth sectors require these skills and they must be confident that the UK's supply can grow with their businesses in the years ahead," the report said.

The Department for Business Innovation and Skills said it was committed to supporting the science and engineering workforce.

"That is why we recently announced a £200m investment in teaching facilities at universities science, technology and engineering and an additional £185m over four years to support teaching," a BIS spokesperson said.

"The government is also funding a range of programmes including STEMNET, the Royal Society and Royal Academy of Engineering diversity programme which are aimed at encouraging at range of people to study science and engineering." ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
DOUBLE BONK: Testy fanbois catch Apple Pay picking pockets
Users wail as tapcash transactions are duplicated
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
Microsoft EU warns: If you have ties to the US, Feds can get your data
European corps can't afford to get complacent while American Big Biz battles Uncle Sam
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.