From this IEEE Roundup article (December 2012):
“[T]o smarten up the grid, utility companies need power engineers—lots of them—and soon. That’s because during the next decade, about half of the estimated 7000 engineers in the field in the United States are expected to retire.”
The solutions offered by the article all amount to throwing more money at encouraging students to take up power engineering, e.g.
“One of the possible solutions is the IEEE Power & Energy Society’s Scholarship Plus Initiative is a multimillion-dollar three-year program that encourages EE undergrads to pursue careers in power engineering by awarding them scholarships and providing career experiences as undergraduates.”
“[T]he Portland General Electric Foundation awarded a $50 000 grant to Portland State University to help prepare engineering students for careers in the power industry. “
“Patricia Hoffman, assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy at the Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability reported that the department used $100 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act—the economic stimulus plan enacted in 2009—to retarget programs toward smart-grid education. The department granted 54 awards to rebuild various university power and energy programs and fund research projects.”
In Search of a New Generation of Power Systems Engineers
Over the next decade, it is estimated that over half of the power systems engineering workforce is eligible to retire. At the same time as knowledge and experience leave the industry, there is renewed investment and political will to upgrade ageing infrastructure and transform the grid to integrate renewable and distributed sources of generation.
This blog looks at how we as a profession are going to fill this gap between growing demand and shrinking supply of specialist power engineering skills, with particular focus on the education and training of a new generation of power systems engineers.
Open Electrical is a free power systems engineering resource for industry practitioners, academics and students.
- Surviving Mesothelioma
- Dismal Unemployment Numbers for Electrical Engineers
- Filling the Power Engineering Skills Gap
- The Unwritten Laws of Engineering
- Recruiting Challenges in the Power Sector
- In a Warming Job Market, the Hottest Sector is Power
- Smart Grid and the Next Generation
- European Universities not “turning out enough engineers”
- Reinventing the Way We Teach Engineers
- Improving Mathematics Education
- HBS Case Study Approach to Engineering Education
- Comparing Engineering in India and Australia
- Can Engineering Schools be Fixed? Part 3
- Can Engineering Schools be Fixed? Part 2
- Can Engineering Schools be Fixed? Part 1