It’s Engineers Week in Ireland, seven days of nationwide events that celebrate and raise awareness of the world of engineering in the country. Engineers Week couldn’t be more timely in a country like Ireland, where efforts are under way to increase the number of students in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).
Prof Orla Feely, the chair of the Irish Research Council and professor in the School of Electrical, Electronic and Communications Engineering in University College Dublin, sees first hand the industry need for an increase in the number of skilled graduates and researchers.
The quality of Ireland’ s graduates is second to none, Feely recently pointed out to Ann O’Dea, but large ICT companies are looking for three or four times the number that are coming out of, for example, electronic engineering. She believes progress is being made, however.
“Certainly at undergraduate level we are seeing students in electronic engineering come to us in numbers that we had not seen in many, many years,” Feely says. “And we are also seeing an increase in applications from international students, both at post-graduate and undergraduate level.”
Here’s to engineers, past, present and future.