One of the greatest things about the study of engineering is the wealth of specialisations graduates venture into. From chemical, to electrical, to mechanical and beyond, prospective students looking to forge a career in engineering can choose from a wide range of disciplines, expanding their professional prospects to new and exciting heights.
Constant global demand for highly-skilled engineers is a major pulling factor for students round the globe, with their ability to deal with the challenges of modern life promising respect and stability that’s hard to find elsewhere. But how do you know when you’ve found the perfect programme to turn your talent into employable expertise?
The first thing to find out with any engineering school is the range of specialisations the institution has to offer. If their portfolio presents your degree of choice, check out whether the programme adopts a theoretical or practical approach, because if you seek real-world applicability, a more practically-led course is more likely to allow you to put what you’ve learnt into professional practice.
First step is to check whether your degree provides an integrated placement, allowing you to gain experience working in the field with reputable organisations. These industry placements not only help you gain a desirable set of skills, but also greatly boost your employment opportunities, possibly even landing you a permanent company position. This experience paired with strong academic results are what recruiters actively seek in engineering graduates.
Interested to know which universities will help propel your career to new heights? Here are 5 UK engineering departments that are providing students with an excellent education and unparalleled practical experience.
The University of Hertfordshire has a history rich in engineering and technology. As a future graduate from the School of Engineering and Technology you will posses graduate attributes that steer you through life’s challenges with confidence.
The University is proud of their excellent laboratory and computing resources, and they are passionate about their teaching and research, which brings the latest thinking into the curriculum.
The School enjoys strong support from its industry partners and they collaborate with many engineering organisations in the UK and overseas. This attention to the needs of industry makes Hertfordshire’s graduates highly employable.
You will learn from experienced teaching and research staff whose work with industry provides employment-relevant case studies and examples for you to study. The School’s commitment to professional accreditation and support for the engineering professions is illustrated through the proactive involvement of their industrial advisory groups and with their student learning experience.
Delivering inspirational learning and pioneering research with unique practical focus, the University of Huddersfield is the ideal place to begin your engineering learning journey. The institution has the UK’s best qualified teachers, and is also amongst the top 10 providers of ‘sandwich courses’, offering students professional work placements to prepare them for careers in their chosen fields. The School of Computing and Engineering offers several undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in engineering as well as a foundation course. Programmes are informed by world leading research and are internationally-recognised and accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), contributing towards satisfying Chartered Engineer requirements.
The School places up to 200 students a year with influential companies like Cameron Engineering, Cummins Turbo Technologies, Mercedes Benz, Nestle, Red Bull Technology, Vauxhall, Jagex, Hewlett Packard, and its own Canalside Studios. These internships are extremely useful, with many students returning from their work placement with sponsorship and the offer of a permanent job after graduation, bolstering the School’s graduate employability rate of 92 percent.
Students who are interested in becoming a Chartered Engineer will be keen to study here. Its Faculty of Engineering, which is one of the largest and best-equipped schools, offers undergraduate programmes that are fully-accredited by the relevant professional engineering institutions. This allows pupils to become eligible for Chartered Engineer status once they graduate. The Faculty offers over 40 undergraduate and postgraduate programmes that cover the following areas: Architecture, Biomedical Engineering, Chemical & Process Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Design, Manufacture & Engineering Management, Electronic & Electrical Engineering, Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering and Naval Architecture, Ocean and Marine Engineering.
For those hoping to venture into research later on, the university has an excellent research environment with a leading international centre to get you started. You’ll also have access to top-notch facilities such as the Advanced Forming Research Centre, the Technology and Innovation Centre, Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation and Power Networks Demonstration Centre. Understanding that tuition fees can be pricey, the Faculty of Engineering offers over 300 industry-sponsored scholarships, making it one of the largest portfolios in the UK.
This Russell Group University offers high-quality learning that is also industry-immersive. The Faculty boasts several engineering schools in Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials, Civil Engineering and Geosciences, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, and Mechanical and Systems Engineering. Students are given the choice to study at the undergraduate or postgraduate level depending on existing credentials. All courses instil the latest professional and research-based knowledge, as well as entrepreneurial development skills.
As it is a research-intensive university, the Faculty attracts plenty of talented academics that conduct meaningful partnerships with industrial and professional bodies. The University is also one of the top 20 UK institutions that are targeted by The Times Top 100 employers, a fact that’s not surprising seeing when you consider that its graduate employment rate is higher than the national average. Besides offering a well-balanced degree, the Faculty tackles some of society’s biggest challenges through its research. Some of the projects that the Faculty have been working on include smart energy, harnessing digital technology, assuring food and water supply and mitigating climate change.
At the University of Sussex, students are provided with an intellectually-stimulating environment to pursue an engineering education. The Department of Engineering is within the School of Engineering and Informatics, allowing students to work in the same multidisciplinary teams as people working in the industry, collaborating with and learning from colleagues across computing, artificial intelligence, product design, mechanical, automotive and electrical engineering. The Faculty believes that learning this way will widen each pupil’s knowledge of design, engineering and manufacturing as well as develop key skills that will benefit them in the future.
The Department offers a foundation course and several undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. Each course also comes with an option to take an industrial placement year to help strengthen career prospects. With strong partnerships industry partnerships, the Department is able to invite leading experts to contribute to the programmes. Students will have guest lectures from industry experts and seniors who are supervising projects through placements. Many of the organisations who work with the institution also offer sponsored prizes, projects and research to students throughout their degree.
*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International