News that the Government is to establish 12 Institutes of Technology1 has been widely welcomed. The initiative forms part of the ‘biggest shake-up to technical education in a generation’ … one that includes the introduction of new T Levels from 2020 – the technical equivalent to A Levels – as well as the provision of more high-quality apprenticeship opportunities.
David Hughes, chief executive of the Association of Colleges, said the announcement was a “Good down-payment on what must become a long-term strategy for investing more in technical skills. Our prosperity and success as a nation requires greater focus on boosting productivity and that will need far more opportunities for people to gain the skills which will support them in the labour market.”
The surveying sector is no exception, with half of respondents to the latest RICS survey2 citing a shortage of skilled labour as a significant challenge. While many and varied industry initiatives are underway to address the problem, the more basic challenge is to generate interest in surveying as a career while kids are still in school.
For this reason, one can but applaud the work of #getkidsintosurvey initiative3 and its industry sponsors on both sides of the Atlantic to showcase opportunities open to youngsters in the many and varied fields of the profession.
As always, it is putting words into action that counts. This was certainly the case when Graham Mills, Chairman of Technics Group and former President of The Survey Association, tweeted on the company’s presence at a recent Science & Arts Festival in Guildford “It was a great opportunity to show surveying tech and VR visualisations. It’s cool when children get to use our laser scanners and explore a 3D building model. When we tell them that what we do is like Minecraft for grown-ups, they get it!