The impact of Brexit in the UK has been widely discussed in Europe, with the engineering sector in Great Britain likely to be particularly adversely hit. Engineering roles already account for more than 50% of jobs on the UK’s Shortage Occupation List, for example, whilst an end to the freedom of movement will also prevent graduates from pursuing opportunities overseas.
The inability to study engineering or work in Germany will be disappointing to some, as few countries have contributed more to this industry (or science and technology as a whole) than the EUs’ leading economy.
But why is Germany so central to Europe’s appeal amongst aspiring engineers from across the continent, and where can students go to build the widest possible array of engineering skills.
Germany and Engineering – A Rich and Proud Heritage
If you were to mention the EU and engineering in the same sentence, your thoughts would instantly be drawn to Germany and its rich industrial heritage.
For decades, Germany has been a world leader in the field of innovation, particularly in sectors such as chemistry, consumer electronics and the automotive trade. For most of the 20th century, Germany has also won more Nobel Prizes in the fields of science than another nation, whilst the country’s output of scientific research consistently ranks amongst the world’s best.
Germany has also benefited from a wide variety of EU-funded projects, many of which have been coordinated by German universities, research institutes and private sector companies.
In the modern age, engineers who look to study and work in Germany also have the opportunity to collaborate with some of the world’s most technologically advanced brands. These include Volskwagen, BMW and Daimler-Chrysler, each of which are leaders in their respective fields and boast a vast international workforce.
With the demand for German cars and products arguably higher than ever across the globe, engineers can also pursue long and secure careers that are genuinely financially rewarding.
Germany also boasts one of the most competitive engineering job markets in the world, and in this respect it bucks a trend that’s prominent throughout the rest of Europe.
More specifically, whilst countries like the UK struggle to create skilled job opportunities and faces a shortage of qualified engineers, Germany is barely able to product or attract enough talent to meet its demand.
Celebrating Germany’s Educational Scene
Not only can aspiring engineers build hugely successful careers in Germany and the EU, but they can also leverage an outstanding education system that emphasises engineering fundamentals and first-hand apprenticeships.
This remains accessible to UK citizens for now, although we have yet to see how significantly this will change in the wake of Brexit.
By studying at Germany’s top civil, structural and electrical engineering institutions, students will develop an unparalleled foundation of core knowledge, including everything from working processes to the safe use of tools and components sold by suppliers like RS Components.
But where are the best engineering universities in Germany? Well, the Technical University of Munich is arguably the standout institution, with its superb facilities and high quality making it the 41st best-ranked location in the world for learning electrical engineering.
The KIT, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology also ranks in the top 100 in this field, as does the RWTH Aachen University and the Technische Universitat in Berlin.