The Engineering Design and Mathematics (EDM) department at UWE Bristol have partnered with My Future My Choice, to create a unique engineering outreach activity for children in the West of England.
The department has a long standing commitment to widening participation in STEM, and as leader for Skills and Workforce Development for the Digital Engineering Technology & Innovation (DETI) initiative, they are striving to inspire the next generation of digital engineers.
My Future My Choice was established to address the need identified by businesses and school leaders for practical opportunities for young people to engage with the world outside of school. Their team of passionate educationalists and engineers have worked with local businesses to design exciting learning opportunities that offer practical ways of working with the school’s curriculum, and help young people think about what they need to do now, to be happy and successful in the future.
Themes of local heritage and possible futures are featured in all their programmes, with activities incorporating inspirational people, places and innovations that relate to the locality, to boost young people’s confidence and pride in their region.
The new Explore My Engineering Future activity currently being developed by My Future My Choice and the EDM department’s DETI Inspire team will feature a set of 52 ‘Top Trumps’ cards based on diverse engineers who work in the West of England. When playing the game, young people will explore the skills required to do a certain engineering role, by comparing the abilities of different engineers and reading the descriptions about what the job involves.
Each engineer card also belongs to its own ‘Engineering Family’, a group of four engineers who do a similar job or work in a similar field. Students can then understand how engineers relate to one another, and which engineers may work together on collaborative projects.
To make the activity accessible during the current pandemic situation, the cards will be available both as a physical pack and as a digital resource. Each digital card will have its own ‘TikTok’ style video from a real-life engineer, which explains the best parts of their job, their career/life journey, and advice they would give to young people considering a future in engineering.
The team are still looking for enthusiastic volunteers to theme the cards around, so if you are an engineer and would like to be involved in this innovative outreach project, contact the DETI Inspire team at firstname.lastname@example.org
DETI is a strategic programme of the West of England Combined Authority (WECA), delivered by the National Composites Centre, in partnership with the Centre for Modelling & Simulation, Digital Catapult, the University of the West of England, the University of Bristol, and the University of Bath. DETI is funded by £5m from WECA, with co-investment from the High Value Manufacturing Catapult and industry.