BAE Systems and University of Portsmouth Pioneer UK’s First Space Systems Engineering Degree Apprenticeship

by Anna

In a groundbreaking collaboration, BAE Systems and the University of Portsmouth have introduced the United Kingdom’s inaugural degree apprenticeship in Space Systems Engineering.

Applications are currently being accepted for the initial intake of aspiring space engineers who will contribute to cutting-edge projects like Azalea. This project aims to launch a revolutionary multi-sensor low earth orbit satellite cluster in 2025, providing real-time intelligence to military clients.


Selected apprentices will undergo comprehensive on-the-job training at BAE Systems facilities in Alton and Guildford, delving into crucial skills such as System and Mission Analysis, Software Development, AOCS (Attitude and Orbit Control System), and Electronics. These apprenticeships will be guided by experienced professionals within the industry.


The University of Portsmouth will offer participants a four-and-a-half-year Bachelor of Engineering in Space Systems Engineering. This program is designed to equip students with the latest skills in areas such as Computer Aided Design, Telecommunication Systems, Space Science, Space Mission Design, and Materials and Manufacture.


This innovative academic initiative underscores the expansion of the UK space sector, showcasing the concerted efforts of both industry and academia to provide valuable training in this specialized field. The program’s development has been influenced by insights from a diverse advisory group, including government representatives, leaders in the space sector, and the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education.


Doug Liddle, director of Space at BAE Systems’ Digital Intelligence business, emphasized the importance of the UK’s first space degree apprenticeship, stating that it plays a crucial role in attracting the next generation of talent to support the nation’s ambition to become a space science and technology superpower.

Professor Djamel Ait-Boudaoud, Executive Dean for the Faculty of Technology at the University of Portsmouth, stressed the significance of addressing the skills shortage challenge within the expanding UK space sector. He highlighted the essential collaboration between educational institutions and industry to meet national and regional skill demands.

BAE Systems is gearing up for an unprecedented recruitment drive in 2024, offering approximately 2,700 new apprentice and graduate opportunities across the UK. With over 60 programs available, the opportunities span various levels and disciplines, including steelwork and electrical engineering, cyber security, software development, human resources, and project management.

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