A Bachelor of Engineering (BEng) degree has been unveiled by Siemens and the University of Salford to help address the engineering skills shortage affecting UK industry. The BEng degree in Control & Automation will address these gaps by increasing the academic status of apprentices and engineering personnel in these areas, delivering relevant content - especially digital content - to meet the needs of today's industrial businesses.
The new Honours degree will be available at the University of Salford and combines a number of academic modules, together with Siemens' Approved "˜PLC Programmer Certification'. It is available to both apprentices and anyone with an existing appropriate level 5 engineering qualification and experience.
Jason Phin, Apprentice Scheme Coordinator for Siemens UK and Ireland, comments: "At Siemens we have long championed the role of apprentices and the importance of training new engineers and encouraging more into the UK industry. We've done this by working in close partnership with a number of further and higher education facilities, and the development of this degree represents a truly unique collaboration between further education, higher education and industry."
Professor Richard Stephenson, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Salford, says: "The University has a strong reputation of working closely with industry, which is reflected in its strategy for developing Industrial Collaboration Zones. I'm delighted that we are collaborating with Siemens to offer a programme which will equip participants with industry-specific understanding to enhance their skill-set and further their career in engineering."
The year-long top-up degree is available as part of the Level 6 Degree Apprenticeship standard for control / technical support engineer, or as a stand-alone option for engineers looking to upskill and achieve an academic qualification.
Jason concludes: "As the impact of digitisation continues to shape the UK's industrial future, it is crucial we have the skills to support it. For this reason, we wanted to ensure this degree was not just purely an academic solution we would endorse, but that it would offer the practical skills required by the engineers of tomorrow."
The degree, which has been created according to requirements of UK-SPEC, will enrol its first cohort in September 2017.
Last year, Siemens joined forces with the University of Salford and Trafford College to develop education and training programmes for school leavers to degree level. Degree Apprenticeships, which are part government-funded, allow people to study while working and achieve higher qualifications without accruing large student debts.
Engineers at the University of Salford who are also developing the programmes include Dr Nigel Blackie, Director of Computing, Acoustics and Future Media and Dr Steve Hill, Senior Lecturer.
Further information about the BEng degree in Control & Automation and about Siemens can be found at www.siemens.com.