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Open entry to engineering programme to meet market demand

Press Release – Otago Polytech

Media release – Otago Polytechnic

For immediate release – Friday, 1 November

Open entry to engineering programme will see market demand met

Otago Polytechnic has launched a new Engineering programme which will make it easier for prospective students to get a Diploma or Degree in Engineering.

The Certificate in Foundation Studies (Level 3) and (Level 4) will act as bridging options into the New Zealand Diploma in Engineering and the Bachelor of Engineering Technology. Entry requirements are open, which means applicants do not need a formal academic background to qualify. Students will be entered into either Level 3 or Level 4 dependant on their final goal and previous experiences.

John Findlay, Head of the School of Architecture, Building and Engineering says the open entry requirements are in response to the shortage of engineers in New Zealand.

“There is presently a significant scarcity of trained engineers particularly at Diploma and three year Degree level and this is expected to become more acute in the short term. This is our response to the market demand,” says Mr Findlay.

“All you need is some self-motivation, commitment to study and a good work ethic. It doesn’t matter what your background is, if you want to become an engineer, we have the ability to make it happen.”

The Level 3 programme includes four 15-credit papers, including ‘Introductory Mathematics for Engineers’ and ‘Physics for Engineers’, and will provide entry to the New Zealand Diploma in Engineering which has three strands; Civil, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering.

This Diploma is a two year, full-time programme which will have graduates qualified to work as engineering technicians in the civil, mechanical or electrical engineering fields.

“If a student wants to continue to advance their skills, they can go on to study the Bachelor of Engineering Technology programme and reduce the length of this degree by a year and a half,” explains Mr Findlay.

Students can also access this degree, which has three majors, Civil, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering, by successfully studying the Level 4 programme, then directly entering the degree programme.

“This qualification includes a significant industry-based project which helps students gain professional experience under the guidance of industry practitioners. This is a major point of difference for our graduates when they apply for jobs.”

Both the Level 3 and Level 4 programmes are one semester in duration on a full-time basis. Otago Polytechnic‘s next intake for both levels will be in February and July, 2014.

Mr Findlay is confident career prospects are bright for future engineers. “Both qualifications are internationally benchmarked and engineering graduates and New Zealand-trained engineering graduates have a good reputation worldwide.”

-ENDS-

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