Engineers call for technology universities in Ireland

28 Feb 2012

Student ulie Farrelly from DIT Bolton St, pictured during the launch of Engineers Week 2012

Some 73pc engineers believe Ireland needs technology universities, a survey from Engineers Ireland has revealed. And, of the 1,200 engineers who were surveyed, 73pc said they believed funding for third-level education institutions should be performance-based.

Engineers Ireland carried out the survey as part of Engineers Week 2012, which is taking place this week.

John Power, director-general of Engineers Ireland, said today that academia needs to be more accountable to ensure that Ireland produces graduates with the right technology skills to meet the needs of emerging sectors.

“Irish companies continue to make great strides in key sectors like software development, with these engineers becoming increasingly integral to technology companies that are now vitally important to our economy. But the findings of our survey clearly show that there is a belief amongst our members that third-level institutions, more than ever before, need to be accountable and fit for purpose when it comes to tackling the skills deficit that still exists amongst our graduates,” he said.

Power went on to say that he believed it was paramount that academia increases it engagement with industry to make sure graduates are equipped with transferable skills to capitalise on the job opportunities that exist in the area.

As part of Engineers Week 2012, about 250 events are taking place all over the island of Ireland. Engineers Ireland said the aim of the week is to highlighting the importance of the engineering sector to Ireland’s present and future economy.

Yesterday, the body also released a report, which looked at Ireland’s energy infrastructure and the challenges it must confront.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic