A team of students have teamed up with one of the UK’s leading nuclear engineering businesses as part of a nationwide initiative to spark high flying careers.
The Year 12 science and engineering students are taking part in Engineering Education Scheme (EES), a programme run by the Engineering Development Trust (EDT). A key part of the scheme gives students an opportunity to work on ‘real life’ engineering problems proposed by a partner engineering company.
This has seen Hugh Baird College students working on a joint project for six months with Warrington based Nuclear Engineering Services (NES). The combined project to develop a container transport system for nuclear waste extracted from a silo is now set to judged by an EDT panel.
In addition, the students have submitted their application to the British Science Association (BA). This could see them awarded with a Gold Crest Award honouring achievements in STEM based projects.
Hugh Baird College engineering lecturer Douglas Pinch said the broader scheme involved students and tutors from across England and Scotland uniting with local companies to work on real, scientific, engineering and technological problems.
He said it presented a terrific opportunity to give students with an in-depth experience in science, engineering and technology. It also crucially sharpens students’ employability skills.
“We have been working alongside Nuclear Engineering Services since September 2013,” he said. “We would like to thank them for their support. The project saw students building a model of a nuclear waste transport system. They were also required to produce a written report detailing design decisions, results and conclusion drawn throughout.
“They have just completed the final part of the project which involved making formal presentations to senior engineers at Liverpool University. We have now submitted the final thesis for judging.
“It has been a thoroughly rewarding initiative to be involved in. The students have gained real life experience with industry leading professionals. This will help to crystallize their decisions about future studies and careers.
“We are keen to communicate these sort of high-calibre opportunities we offer at Hugh Baird College. We encourage anyone wanting to know more about our engineering and science offering to get in touch.”
Hugh Baird College BTEC Level 3 Engineering Diploma student Tanatsiwa Moyo said the project had been a really enjoyable part of her studies.
“It has been exciting to visit and work within a real nuclear engineering environment,” she said. “It was great to have the opportunity to gain hands-on work experience as part of a team.
“We learnt a great deal about problem solving through a project that was relevant to a local company. This showed us how we can apply what we have learnt in the classroom. We also got to see Liverpool University’s engineering workshops where we were able to develop, build and test our solutions.”
EDT Regional coordinator Lisa Mather said the scheme has proved another great success.
“The EES is an all encompassing initiative in terms of student training,” she said. “It provides invaluable exposure to the workplace and shows students the sort of professional skills which employers are looking for. During their six-month project phase, they are encouraged to show industrial enterprise, creativity and innovation. They gain extensive experience of problem-solving, team-working and project management.
“Personal development and work related learning are at the core of this high quality educational enrichment scheme. The students at Hugh Baird College have really applied themselves. We now await the judging from the EDT panel.”
For more information on Hugh Baird College’s science and engineering course visit the website www.hughbaird.ac.uk or call directly on 0151 3534444. For more information on the EDT visit the website www.etrust.org.uk.
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