Fix it for­ward – Joel Leonard

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - CONTENTS -

I be­lieve with engineering de­vel­op­ing within the younger gen­er­a­tion we will see a boom in young engi­neers who are look­ing to sup­port the in­dus­try sec­tor in jobs such as main­te­nance engi­neers.

Ob­sta­cles mainly in­clude the fact that th­ese days the youth do not know what main­te­nance engineering is, or where it will take you in life. How do you over­come this?

I think you need to have ex­po­sure to th­ese sorts of jobs, and the in­dus­try path­ways a main­te­nance engi­neer or engi­neer, as a young per­son dur­ing the most im­por­tant de­ci­sion-mak­ing time at school.

MESNZ schol­ar­ship win­ner and chair­man of the newly formed Youth De­vel­op­ment Com­mit­tee, Con­nor Hobbs says most young stu­dents are com­pletely un­aware that engineering is ac­tu­ally very broad in na­ture.

“You need youth to choose engineering in gen­eral be­fore they choose main­te­nance engineering,” he says.

I be­lieve your strong­est chances at ex­po­sure to youth about engineering and main­te­nance engineering are the lo­cal ca­reer path­way days in each com­mu­nity that are held an­nu­ally.

“If MESNZ got into con­tact with each lo­cal or­ga­ni­za­tion and found out how they can come along and pro­mote engineering, then you will have a higher flow of in­com­ing main­te­nance engi­neers,” says Con­nor.

“I think it is im­por­tant to not force youth and tell them that they must be­come a main­te­nance engi­neer. In­stead, at this stage, you need to pro­mote engineering in gen­eral – per­haps with the co­op­er­a­tion of IPENZ at th­ese func­tions and per­haps plant the seed about main­te­nance engineering through the work of MESNZ while at th­ese events.”

It’s clear that the real work and de­ci­sions about de­tailed path­ways will be done when con­fer­ences are held for first year engi­neers in the main uni­ver­si­ties for engineering.

“This first year is crit­i­cal to se­cur­ing fu­ture gen­er­a­tions of main­te­nance engi­neers be­cause the first year of engineering we are ex­posed to ev­ery type of engineering and most of the time in our cour­ses they may not have as much ex­po­sure as what civil or me­chan­i­cal will have, for ex­am­ple,” says Con­nor.

“If you have a con­fer­ence that ed­u­cates youth about main­te­nance engineering and have a lec­ture or video that you show dur­ing the lec­ture then you will plant the op­tion of main­te­nance engineering into there minds. “This will help nar­row down their choices be­fore head­ing into the sec­ond year of univer­sity.”

Con­nor says that New Zealand has a lot of youth who want to be engi­neers and there are cer­tainly vast amounts of tal­ent to tap into.

“It’s just the prob­lem of com­pa­nies and or­ga­ni­za­tions such as MESNZ and IPENZ us­ing their re­sources and putting con­fer­ences to­gether for the youth of our gen­er­a­tion,” he says. “It will cer­tainly help us and the fu­ture of engineering a lot.”

Per­haps even cre­at­ing an ed­u­ca­tional video that is ac­tu­ally in­ter­est­ing to watch about main­te­nance engineering and what it in­cludes will raise aware­ness.

“I be­lieve MESNZ also needs to cre­ate a Face­book page and so does IPENZ if it doesn’t have one,” says Con­nor.

“This is where the youth of to­day are all lo­cated and if you post de­tails about up and com­ing con­fer­ences, videos high­light­ing what the in­dus­try in­cludes, etc, then you will gen­er­ate more in­ter­est in the main­te­nance engineering sec­tor.

“Face­book is one of the big­gest tools to use cur­rently and ev­ery­one uses it and will not miss your up­dates if you have a page that is liked by a lot of peo­ple.”

Con­tact Joel Leonard, the ‘main­te­nance evan­ge­list’ at www.Skil­lTV.Net

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