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Money minded


I beg to disagree with Jackie Whitelaw's Comment (NCE 29 November). She observes that up to half of civil engineering graduates hop into other professions, but claims this has little to do with pay or prospects. On the contrary, I know a number of civil engineers who have left for the better prospects in fields such as IT and management consultancy.

In this country, engineers operate in a free market place. Accordingly, rewards are governed solely by the forces of supply and demand. Civil engineers' salaries are low because there are too many engineers competing for the work available. The last thing we need is more entrants to the profession.

Having more engineers as school governors might not achieve her objectives. My children have left school and are not pursuing engineering as a career.

What might have interested them in considering it would have been, not the promotion of engineering in the classroom, but the street credibility of the parental cars in the car park.

Engineers turning up to governors' meetings and parking their ageing VW Golfs alongside the BMWs of the IT professionals, accountants and lawyers, would, I suspect, have the opposite effect to that which she intended.

Roger Button, 4 Beaufort Place, Bath BA1 6RP

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