August 15, 2016, by Michael Jennings
#TechniciansMakeItHappen at The University of Nottingham
Guest post from Kelly Vere, Technical Skills and Development Manager at The University of Nottingham.
The University of Nottingham is proud to be an official supporter of “Technicians Make It Happen”– a multi-channel campaign led by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation that is raising awareness of technician roles.
Here at The University of Nottingham there are over 700 technicians working across our campuses in the UK, China and Malaysia. They are vital to the success of our university. They are highly skilled, work across a wide range of disciplines (quite literally from A – Archaeology to Z – Zoology!) and provide the technical expertise essential to enabling research, teaching and knowledge transfer.
Alongside this, many technicians are researchers and teachers in their own right. They play an important part in enhancing the student learning experience by teaching and developing the technical skills students require to pursue a future career in research, academia and/or industry.
Technicians at the University sharing their support for #techniciansmakeithappen
While technicians do amazing things every day, in our university and others, as a group, they’ve traditionally experienced a lack of visibility. Here at Nottingham we’ve been working hard to increase visibility of our technical talent – for example, we convened the inaugural Higher Education Technicians’ Summit in 2015 and our Faculty of Engineering Technical Team were the recipients of a 2016 Lord Dearing Award.
However, this isn’t an issue confined to higher education; technical invisibility is present across all sectors. This has led to a shortage of people entering technical careers – in fact, current estimates suggest that the UK needs 70,000 new qualified technicians across the STEM workforce each year. But how can we expect anyone to aspire to a career that they’re unaware of?
The Technicians Make it Happen campaign aims to increase visibility and recognition of technicians. It consists of a number of ‘Technician Stories’ – case studies that showcase a number of technical careers from organisations such as the Royal Air Force and the BBC (and look out for some of our own technicians who will feature in the campaign later this year!). You can support the campaign on social media by following @technicians_mih on Twitter and sharing your photos using the #techniciansmakeithappen hashtag.
We’re very proud to support the campaign. Technicians certainly make it happen here at The University of Nottingham!
“It is unimaginable that we could deliver what we do without a really well qualified and motivated technical staff “
Professor Sir David Greenaway, Vice-Chancellor at The University of Nottingham