Rocketing growth - huge success for second annual space careers fair

The Second Annual Space Industry Careers Fair took place on 9 February 2015 at the National Space Centre in Leicester.

More than 200 students, delegates and company representative attended, representing 38 different universities and education institutions and 20 leading companies in the space industry. The day included a speaker series, networking opportunities, career advice and CV review sessions. The aims of the event were to showcase the opportunities for careers in the space industry and to offer companies who are recruiting in this growth area the chance to meet young people with aspirations to work in the sector.

Rachel Tice, 2nd year geography student at Manchester Metropolitan University, said she felt “privileged to have been able to attend. By attending I feel very hopeful that there are many careers within the industry that I can aim for, as I was unsure previously.”

Speakers focused on topics including Earth Observation, Geographic Information Systems, Satellite Navigation and the future of space in the UK.   Students also participated in a question-and-answer session with an expert panel.  Mihir Mehta, a software test engineer said, “I really had a good time and was able to network with many people. It was indeed a very useful and a fruitful event for me, getting to hear so many industry experts and interacting with them all.”

Organised and hosted by EMBRACE, the East Midlands Centre of Excellence for the Satellite Applications Catapult, the event is the only space-themed careers event in the UK and offers students an insight into the field and an opportunity to learn about and to be inspired to pursue a career in the space industry

Professor Paul Monks of the Department of Chemistry, and the EMBRACE Lead Partner said: “The event saw over 100 students and 20 space businesses networking.  The students said this was a great opportunity and the companies said the students were focussed on space needs.  A great event all round at the iconic National Space Centre.”

Leading up to the event, Professor Monks noted that, “recruiting high quality graduates into the space industry is essential if this sector of the UK economy is to grow to meet the target set by the space innovation and growth strategy. The Space Industry Careers Fair directly addresses the need for jobs and growth while promoting the space industry both regionally and nationally.”

The UK space industry is currently worth about £11.3 billion to the UK economy and provides over 34,000 jobs. It is a rapidly growing industry and is projected to reach a net worth of £40 billion by 2030.