PARENTS in York have been casting career hopes for their children as a survey puts medicine as the number one profession choice for the nation's offspring.

The national survey revealed 18 per cent of parents would like to see their children go into a career in medicine, making it the top choice when people were asked to pick the best job for their kids.

A job in administration came at the bottom of the list after being named by only one per cent of respondents, with a career in finance being named by just three per cent.

The findings are from a survey of parents of 11-16 year olds, commissioned by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) to discover to what extent parents’ attitudes to engineering careers are contributing to the engineering skills shortage in the UK.

Seven per cent of parents who expressed a preferred career choice for their child chose engineering, beating law at four per cent, but lagging behind teaching at 10 per cent and arts & media at 11 per cent of the 771 parents questioned.

When asked the reasons for their choice of career, the top reason given by parents was “I think they would enjoy it” (50 per cent), followed by “I think they would be good at it” (38 per cent) and “I think it would be interesting” (28 per cent).

Pay and job stability were lower down the list at 21 per cent and 20 per cent respectively, while “Because I work in that industry” was bottom of the list at only four per cent.

In light of the research parents in York have been discussing what career paths they would like to see their children take.

Nicki Hutchinson, a senior manager at York accountancy firm JWP Creers has a son aged 14 and an 11-year-old daughter. She said: "Apparently they have already made their career choices and they are the same choices I would make for them myself; a pilot and a vet, respectively.

"Although my son is very clever, I want my daughter to have a career where she can reach for the sky but if she doesn’t get the exam results she needs, she can enter the profession at a lower level."

Tom Keeney, BT's regional director for Yorkshire and the Humber, lives in Elvington with his 17-year-old daughter and 14-year-old son.

He said: "I would like my children to do something interesting, rewarding and worthwhile.

"The closest profession from those in the report would be medicine or law and if I had to choose it would be law for me. It combines technical logic with common sense and no two days would be the same.

"I also think my children have strong ethics and values and what better job than making sure the law of the land lives up to what people deserve. Having said that I think my daugther wants to be a teacher."

Anne Taylor, director at SeeGreen Media in Clifton Moor has a long way to go before her children start thinking about career choices with two daugthers Abigail and Edith aged just six and three respectively.

She said: "I certainly think that job satisfaction goes a very long way and mainly I'd want my children to be happy and motivated in their careers.

"Of course, having a decent wage is important too, but there's a definite balance to strike and the favour does ultimately tip towards job satisfaction.

"With a six-year-old who wants to be an artist like her grandma was and a three-year-old who wants to be a princess, I think there will be many changes to their career choices over the coming years, and we'll enjoy helping them make the decisions that are right for them as individuals."

Andrew Follington, area director of North Yorkshire commercial and Yorkshire agriculture banking at HSBC, said: "Our daughter Leah is extremely creative and diligent in her studying and has a passion for design. Therefore a career in the interior or textile industry would probably be the most appealing.

"However, our son Joe is much more of a hands on person with a very mechanical mind so, appropriately for this article, he will most likely go down the engineering route.

"I guess my ultimate advice or hope for them would be to agree with the majority of parents in the survey and do something they enjoy."