AESSEAL® steps up student engagement to bridge engineering skills gap


More than 4,000 students were encouraged to consider engineering as a career last year thanks to the work of mechanical seals manufacturer AESSEAL®, as part of their sustainably development programme.

The company increased the number of visits to its headquarters and state-of-the-art Global Technology Centre in Mill Close, Rotherham, with impressive results.

The highlight of the outreach work was a two-day event in November, when AESSEAL® threw open its doors to give around 160 students from Rotherham schools an insider view of a global engineering company, with a special focus on attracting young women into the profession.

Following the events, 84% of students said the visit had changed their perception of engineering and almost half said they would consider a career in engineering as a result.

AESSEAL®, which has won national awards for its work to encourage young people into engineering as well as for its apprenticeship programme, has employed a total of 75 apprentices in 2018 and 2019, across a variety of departments, including mechanical engineering. This is at a time when a government study on the engineering sector has predicted in order to reduce the skills shortages, around 186,000 skilled recruits are need each year until 2024.

Stephen Shaw, Engineering Director at AESSEAL®, said: “The skills gap is a serious challenge and our business can only continue to thrive and grow if we have a skilled local workforce.

“The student visits to AESSEAL® are proving highly successful in showcasing engineering as an attractive career choice and we’re confident that more young people will be joining our teams as a result of them.”

He added: “It’s not just about adding to our workforce. Our work with schools and colleges helps to broaden young people’s horizons, develop skills such as teamwork and problem solving, and prepare them for working life in whatever career they choose.”

The visits to AESSEAL® involved a wide range of students, including science, engineering, technology and maths (STEM students) from the University of Leeds and students with hearing or learning disabilities from Wickersley School and Sports College. The company also visited schools and colleges to offer CV training and mentorship, and continued its support of events which promote STEM subjects, such Get Up To Speed, where AESSEAL® is a headline sponsor.


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