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Aspiring engineers solve problems with the professionals

8 January 2015

We're delighted to have once again hosted the Engineering Education Scheme; aiming to inspire young people from across the county to fulfil their potential by choosing a career in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

From Tuesday 6 to Thursday 8 January, the College’s Gloucester Campus welcomed 136 students and members of staff from 16 schools across Gloucestershire and the South West, which include Balcarras School, Cheltenham Bournside, Cheltenham Ladies’ College and Tewkesbury School.

During the three days, the students, who are all aged 16 or 17, were paired with engineers from local businesses and tasked to investigate and work on real, scientific, engineering and technological problems.

Examples include creating an energy recovery system for a military vehicle; improving composite wing spar production; investigating, prototyping and testing jet engine variable pitch control; designing a space antenna mechanism deployment system; developing a functional avatar using Kinect; and improving the safety of level crossings.

Along with some of Gloucestershire College’s student ambassadors, the visiting students worked on these projects with experienced engineers, scientists and technologists from leading local companies, which include Spirax Sarco, Ultra Electronics, GKN Aerospace, BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce, L-3 TRL Technology, Safran Messier Dowty, RWE npower, the Science and Technology Facilities Council, Oxford Space Systems, Infineon Technologies, SEA, the M+W Group, DPD, the National Composite Centre, TE Connectivity, Siemens Rail Automation and Exception EMS.

Hameed Okeyere, the interim Head of School for Engineering at Gloucestershire College, said: “We’re thrilled to be hosting the Engineering Education Scheme for the second year running, in line with our commitment to STEM. Not only does the scheme give students hands-on experience of working within a team, but experience of problem solving too, as they work on projects that are relevant to local companies.

“At Gloucestershire College, we have excellent engineering facilities and workshops, which enable students to develop, build and test solutions to problems, and hosting the Engineering Education Scheme is a great way to showcase all we have to offer to young people and local employers.

“The UK needs more engineers and scientists and here at Gloucestershire College, we’re dedicated to inspiring and motivating young people to choose a rewarding career in STEM.” 

The Engineering Education Scheme culminated in the students presenting their solutions, both in a formal verbal presentation and formal written technical report, to a panel of senior professional engineers on the final day.

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