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Cash boost for engineers' image

THE GOVERNMENT has pledged £1.5M for two campaigns to improve the image of engineers.

The announcement of a £1.5M grant from the Department of Trade and Industry this week will boost the coffers of campaigns from the Engineering Council and the Quinco joint venture between engineering institutions.

Energy and industry minister John Battle set out the Government's official backing to the campaigns to the EngC Senate last week.

He said: 'We must continue to try and alter the negative perceptions that exist and persuade young people that careers in science and engineering can be rewarding.'

The DTI plan will boost the EngC's and Engineering Employers Federation's faltering campaign which had been expected to launch national television and cinema advertisements this spring. DTI money will be invested once the campaign gets to implementation stage.

EEF marketing director Jeremy Miller said: 'Government backing is one of the main pillars of support needed. We now need to win over private companies.' He confirmed that the campaign was still at the 'road testing' development phase and had fallen behind on its original programme.

The five-year Quinco project to support individual campaigns promoting engineering needs to increase the amount of patrons from 30 to 50 to gain funding. It would be supported for a further two years if enough progress was made over the next three years.

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