The number of young people studying health and safety qualifications has more than doubled in the last five years, according to the National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health (Nebosh).
Students are taking Nebosh health and safety qualifications instead of going to university or as complementary study to vocational routes such as apprenticeships, the examination board said.
About 90 per cent of job advertisements for safety, health and environmental roles require one or more Nebosh qualifications.
Claire Dustan, 25, decided not to go to university and instead got a job as a health and safety administrator. She then progressed her career and joined Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group, where she was encouraged to take the Nebosh national general certificate in occupational health and safety.
“It was brilliant,” she said. “I could relate what I was learning through Nebosh to Marshall, even though aerospace is quite specialist all my learning had a practical side I could use at work.
“Achieving the Nebosh General Certificate was a huge confidence boost and helped me to kick start the progression I was looking for. I’ve since been promoted to lead health, safety and environment co-ordinator.”
The chief executive of Nebosh, Teresa Budworth, said the increasing number of people aged under 25 who were following a career in health and safety was “a really positive trend”.
She said: “Organisations in every industry across the world employ health and safety personnel and there are many interesting and rewarding roles available. It is a great career option – practitioners really can make a difference by helping to save lives, prevent ill health and protect the environment.”
Courses leading to Nebosh qualifications attract about 50,000 candidates annually and are offered by more than 600 course providers, with exams taken in over 120 countries around the world.
Its qualifications are recognised by professional bodies including the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM) and IEMA.
If you are looking for more information on the Health & Safety industry, you can now pre-register for a copy of Acre’s 2017 HSE Insights Survey.