Friday, April 29, 2016

News: Region's record-breaking STEM showcase

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The Get up to Speed with Engineering and Manufacturing (GUTS) event is now thought to be the largest event of its kind in the North of England, after more than 2,000 visitors came through the doors at the Magna Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham last week.

Moving to Rotherham last year, GUTS is the premier event in the region aimed at inspiring the next generation of manufacturers and engineers. It brings employers and employment opportunities together with school children, students, parents and educators.

Now in it's sixth year, the event is organised by local charity The work-wise Foundation, in partnership with Very Creative Ltd, RiDO, Creative Sheffield, Parker President, The Manufacturing Forum and founding sponsors Tata Steel and the IMechE. Organisers were also delighted to welcome AESSEAL plc, IMechE Engineering Training Solutions, Santander, Highlander IT & Telecoms and Made in Sheffield on-board as event sponsors.

One of the main attractions this year was BLOODHOUND SSC, the British engineering showcase that aims to break the world land speed record by achieving the supersonic speed of 1,000mph. The project also aims to inspire future generations to take up careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by showcasing these subjects in the most exciting way possible.

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John Barber, chair of the organising committee and co-founder of the work-wise Foundation, said: "Employers know best the world of work, they know best what skills and aptitudes employees need and they know how best to inspire young people about their future, so it makes absolute sense that local companies within and supporting the sector come together to provide this incredibly engaging, informative and fun careers event.

"This year's event proved to be record-breaking in more ways than one, not only was our headline attraction the world record challenging Bloodhound Supersonic Car but with around 2,000 visitors, 45 schools attending and over 70 employers and attractions, we broke a few previous records of our own.

"We had a vast array of different attractions, demonstrating to young people the impact that science, technology, engineering and maths has on our world, including Rolls Royce aircraft engines, a whole range of alternative powered vehicles (Electric BMWi3 and Tesla and ITM Power hydrogen powered car), Rally and Formula Racing cars (some built by students), a range of hands on simulators, virtual reality experiences, giant digital Scalextric track (10 X 10 metres), mind controlled vehicles and the fastest blind driver in the world. Oh and of course we had a Dalek and Our Cow Molly Ice Cream!"


Founding Sponsor Mick Hood, HR director for Tata Steel, added: "Tata Steel has supported Get up to Speed ever since its inception and continue to see its importance in raising awareness among young people, teachers and parents of the exciting opportunities on offer by choosing an engineering or science-based career."

Get up to Speed is already being planned for next year and will be hosted once again at Magna on April 26.

Jackie Freeborn, co-founder of the work-wise Foundation, said: "It is a huge amount of work, but worth it to see so many young people, schools and parents working with local employers. It's a fantastic thing for the region and particularly for Rotherham, and as Chair of Women in Business for Barnsley and Rotherham, I was also delighted to see so many girls attending the event."

GUTS website

Images: GUTS / Andrew Klinkenberg

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