They will learn parts of coding, 3D printing and smart electronics this week, with a full timetable of activities lasting the entire five days. This includes designing and making a programmable Tamagotchi-style pet, constructing the widest bridges and tallest skyscrapers and the challenge of creating the best Rocket Car.
MCMT staff/apprentices and instructors from BCA are supporting 15 young people – aged between 9 and 13-years-old – to explore and learn from some of the fantastic technology installed at the 36,000ft2 facility on the Stanmore Industrial Estate.
“The skills gap has been well documented, and a lot of time has been spent in engaging secondary school pupils who are considering what to do next after their GCSEs,” explained Matthew Snelson, managing director of the MCMT.
“However, what we have been missing is talking to the grassroots level, with children aged between 9 and 13. This a really key time before pupils make their subject choices, so we wanted to put on an exciting and challenging week that introduced them to STEM and the world of engineering and manufacturing.”
He continued: “We need to inspire and show them that engineering can be a great career, that there’s lots of exciting technologies you can use and that you may just have an idea that will change the way we all live.”
Children will be working on several practical, hands-on projects throughout the week, giving them a fully immersive experience of design and engineering. They will make their own projects, using a full range of traditional and modern engineering tools, such as hand fabrication and finishing tools, Computer Aided Design (CAD), 3D printers and programmable controllers.
There will be a show and tell of their projects at the end of each day and, on Thursday, a race to see which rocket car is the fastest. The winners will receive a special prize at the end of the week where parents will be able to see the end result of what their children have created.
Snelson concluded: “We have also arranged for engineers from local businesses to give various demos during the Engineering Club, ranging from the art of mechanics of classic car vehicle maintenance to advanced robotics and destructive material testing.
“I’m convinced that by the end of the week we’ll have the next generation of engineers wanting to take subjects that will eventually lead to a successful career in industry.”