Women Like Me engineer Rachel Kirkwood engages 1778 children for Leaders Awards

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Rachel Kirkwood, graduate engineer at Peter Brett, reached 1778 primary school pupils today in her online presentation for the Leaders Award. The children from 14 schools across England and Scotland.

The Leaders Award is supported by UWE Bristol and asks children “If you were an engineer, what would you do?”. This free competition asks students to find a problem, invent a solution, draw it, explain and send it in. Pupils are encouraged to both interview engineers and watch the online interviews.

Rachel, who is taking part in UWE’s Women Like Me project to support women and girls in engineering, spoke about civil engineering and transport planning. After the presentation, she said:

“I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and it was a great opportunity to give an insight into the varied world of civil engineering and transport planning. The pupils asked very interesting and sometimes challenging questions. They all seemed to enjoy the session and learn a lot.”

We’re sure Rachel inspired many children today, and are looking forward to more Leaders Award presentations.

Engineers who would like to support Primary Engineer / The Leaders Award can find out more here. Schools which would like to participate in Meet an Engineer interviews can find more information here.

Women Like Me engineer Eleanor Davies presents to 1334 children for Leaders Awards

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UWE Bristol is delighted to be supporting the Primary Engineer and Secondary Engineer Leaders Awards again this year, and even more pleased that some of our Women Like Me engineers are taking part in online ‘Meet an Engineer‘ interviews with school students around the UK as part of this.

Eleanor Davies, a structural engineer at BuroHappold, is one of those engineers and is currently presenting online to 1334 children. So successfully, that the Leaders Awards would like her to come back!

 

 

You can find out more about the Leaders Awards in the video below, or by visiting their website.

Women Like Me and Leaders Award represented at First Friday Club

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On Friday 5th October 2018, UWE Bristol project Women Like Me and the Leaders Award supported by UWE Bristol were presented to leading media editors at the First Friday Club meeting in London.

Presenting to the editors’ briefing, Chris Rochester, UK Director, Primary Engineer said: “In 2017/18 academic year we continued to develop our programmes across the UK which included working with 988 schools, 3,833 teachers and 1,325 engineers. Each one getting involved and helping nearly 57,000 children to understand that engineering is a broad profession with myriad opportunities. It emphasises engineering is a diverse sector which thrives on ingenuity and creativity of the professionals working within it”.

In the South West, the Leaders Award is supported by Defence, Equipment and Support (DE&S), the MOD’s procurement organisation, along with UWE Bristol.

Air Marshal Julian Young, Chief of Materiel Air, and who is the Ministry of Defence’s Engineering Champion and lead Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) Ambassador for DE&S, said: “I am delighted that the Defence Sector is rising to the challenge of increasing its diversity in our Engineering profession, whether that is cultural, gender or nationality, and we are working closely with a range of STEM-related organizations, including Primary Engineer, to help to encourage young women and girls to not only express an interest in Engineering, but to follow that through into a career and a successful one at that!”

Two female engineers from Defence, Equipment and Support also gave accounts of their personal journeys into engineering. May Holmes started her career as a primary teacher – unaware there was more than one kind of engineering aside from civil engineering – before joining DE&S as a mechanical engineer.  She said: “Not all young people are lucky enough to be introduced to and experience STEM, which can be to the detriment of younger generations reaching their full potential as well as to STEM professions – particularly with current and predicted future skills shortages in STEM roles. 

“Through programmes such as Primary Engineer, I enjoy challenging young people’s perception of what Engineering is, who an Engineer is, and encouraging all young people that it can, in fact, be for everyone.”   

UWE Bristol are supporting the South West Leaders Awards and hosting the winners’ Awards Ceremony. A team of female student engineers from the UWE Women in Science and Engineering Society will build the winning design from 2018. Alongside this, UWE Bristol is galvanising support from local industries through their Women Like Me mentoring programme, where local female engineers will work with schools over the coming year.

Dr Laura Fogg-Rogers, who is the project lead and a science communication researcher at UWE Bristol, said: “Engineers are highly creative people who can help to solve many of society’s problems. It’s a really collaborative profession, where you have to work together in teams to see your visions and designs come to fruition. The range of roles and careers is really diverse, and that’s what we’d like to emphasise to all young people, particularly girls. You can make your own mark in engineering!”

Edited from a press release by Neil Fullbrook, Cadence neil@thecadenceteam.com

NASA astronaut Suni Williams talks to thousands of children as Leaders Awards launch

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UWE Bristol is once again supporting the Primary Engineer & Secondary Engineer Leaders Awards in the South West of England.

On 20th September the Leaders Awards launched, with NASA astronaut Suni L Williams giving an online presentation for the 2018/19 competition. Primary Engineer Events Manager Jo Norwood told us: “The interview went really well. Thousands of children from across the UK watched Suni from their classrooms while she spoke about her career. Pupils were given the opportunity to ask Suni questions and here are some of the ones they asked:

What happens to water in space?

How do you go to the toilet?

If you had enough water could you make a swimming pool in space?

Does it take a lot of time to get used to being back on earth?

Has anything ever gone wrong in space?

Have you ever seen anything strange?

What happens when something breaks?

Have you ever broken anything in space?”

One Year 6 girl at Bothal Primary School asked Suni for any tips for girls who want a career in the STEM sector. Suni advised girls to take inspiration wherever they find it and to believe that they can achieve their goals – a strong message for the next generation.

Did you miss out on Suni’s interview? Primary Engineer are holding more live-streamed interviews with engineers! If your school wants to be involved in any of these interviews please register your interest via email to info@leadersaward.com and they will  keep you posted on their schedule.

Schools can also register for the Leaders Awards now.

Leaders Awards launch with online interview with NASA astronaut Suni Williams

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UWE Bristol is pleased to be supporting the Primary Engineer & Secondary Engineer Leaders Awards in the South West of England.

The awards, also supported by Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S), invite pupils from Primary and Secondary schools in the South West of England to be inspired by an engineer from a local industry. They can then apply an engineer’s eye to the world and identify problems in need of solving. When they have settled on their idea, they draw and annotate it, making clear what the problem is and their unique solution to it.

Leaders Awards ask pupils aged 3-19 the question “If you were an engineer what would you do?”. The free competition asks students to find a problem, invent a solution, draw it, explain and send it in. Pupils are encouraged to both interview engineers and watch the online interviews.

Online presentation – Sunita L. Williams – NASA astronaut 20th September 2.30pm

Primary Engineer are delighted to announce that their live-streamed interviews with engineers are back! Schools can register for the Leaders Awards now and take part on  20th September at 2.30 pm with Astronaut Suni Williams. More about Sunita can be found on their website.

If your school wants to be involved in any of these interviews please register your interest via email to info@leadersaward.com and they will  keep you posted on their schedule.

“If you were an engineer, what would you do?”

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2712 children from across the South West answered this question with their designs to solve real-world problems.

The Leaders Awards is organised by Primary Engineer, helping children to meet real-life engineers. Led by Laura Fogg Rogers, UWE Bristol is an official sponsor, in partnership with Defence Equipment and Support (the procurement arm of the Ministry of Defence).

The shortlisted entries were showcased at a public exhibition in June 2018, bringing together 19 winners and their parents in a celebration with engineers from across the South West.

Children from Reception through to Year 10 were recognised for their efforts. Designs ranged from rotating bunk beds to bird-identifier binoculars. Students from UWE Bristol’s EngWest Studio will make one of the winning entries as part of their studies.

The future of engineering is here!

UWE Bristol supports Engineer Leaders Award for South West England

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2018 is the Year of Engineering, a Government-led national campaign to increase awareness among young people, their parents and their teachers of what engineers do. This year, UWE Bristol and DE&S  (the MOD’s Defence, Equipment and Support organisation) are the partner organisations of the Primary Engineer & Secondary Engineer Leaders Awards in the South West of England.

School pupils have met and learnt from engineering students and professionals, before answering the question “If you were an engineer, what would you do?” by identifying a problem in society that engineering could solve and devising a solution.

To launch the competition, back in January DE&S invited school children from the Bristol area to visit their Abbey Wood site and discover some of the kit worked on by its engineers.

Engineering Leaders Award

We welcomed 380 school children on campus this week to find out why engineering is fun and to showcase their own designs for future production as part of the Engineering Leaders Award #ThisisEngineeringMore: http://ow.ly/kxxV30iR24L

Posted by UWE Bristol on Friday, 9 March 2018

 

Primary school children from Years 4-6 also attended the ‘Children as Engineers’ conference at UWE on 7th March, giving them the opportunity to visit the University’s facilities and take part in science activities. Children had the opportunity to pitch their design ideas to engineering students and receive feedback.

Shortlisted and winning entries from the Primary Engineer & Secondary Engineer Leaders Award submitted by primary and secondary school children were then displayed at an exhibition at the University on 30th June.

Winning designs will now be built by UWE Bristol engineering students from September 2018. They take the concept, develop the design and build it into a full-scale functioning prototype, giving the school children who entered the competition an insight into the process behind designing and manufacturing a product.

As part of its commitment to encouraging school children to think about future attendance at a university as well as raising awareness about science and engineering career paths, UWE Bristol is actively involved with schools in the local area.

Last September it set up a module on its undergraduate and postgraduate Engineering degrees to teach students about public engagement with engineering, and the need to widen the appeal of the profession to girls and boys.

As part of the module, 45 of the University’s engineering undergraduates joined forces with 35 UWE Bristol education students to take engineering challenges into 30 primary school classrooms for a day. The event involved over 900 local primary school children, enabling students and children to work together to challenge children’s preconceptions about engineers and the role they play. It also helped support engineering students in their public engagement skills and enabled trainee teachers to develop their knowledge of science teaching.

Laura Fogg-Rogers, who coordinated the event and is Senior Research Fellow in UWE Bristol’s Science Communication Unit said, “Engineers are highly creative people who can help to solve many of society’s problems. It’s a really collaborative profession, where you have to work together in teams to see your visions and designs come to fruition. The range of roles and careers is really diverse, and that’s what we’d like to emphasise to all young people, particularly girls. You can make your own mark in engineering!”

UWE Bristol has also recently launched Women Like Me, a project which will see senior women engineers mentor junior women engineers, who will in turn undertake engineering outreach in schools. For more information about the project and UWE’s engineering outreach work, please email engineeringourfuture@uwe.ac.uk or follow us on Twitter.

UWE Bristol events to inspire next generation of student engineers

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Leading on from International Women in Engineering Day on 23rd June, a week of engineering events organised by UWE Bristol at the end of June is set to showcase the creativity of current and future engineers across the South West.

On 28th June, activities for young people will celebrate women in engineering and inspire schoolgirls interested in the sciences.

On 29th June, judges will announce winners of the Engineer Leaders Awards, and the following day families can view the schoolchildren’s exhibited designs.

Laura Fogg-Rogers, who is coordinating the week of events and is Senior Research Fellow in UWE Bristol’s Science Communication Unit said: “Engineering has an image problem, but in reality it is a creative, socially conscious, and collaborative discipline. Engineers can make a real difference to improve the lives of people in the UK and around the world.

“That’s why it’s so important for UWE Bristol to run events like our Week of Engineering – we want to show all young people that engineering can be a career that helps them make a difference in society.”

Find out more, including the full programme of interactive activities, demonstrations and events for school groups, teachers and families, here.

South West Engineering Leaders Awards Exhibition and Public Event

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Saturday 30th June 2018

10 am – 4 pm

Take part in science and engineering demonstrations, and see the inspiring designs from the Leaders Awards – the children’s engineering design competition for the South West.

UWE Bristol Exhibition and Conference Centre, North Entrance, Filton Road, Stoke Gifford, Bristol, BS34 8QZ

 

On Saturday 30th June, UWE’s engineers will showcase their latest research and technology in the Exhibition and Conference Centre at UWE. The event is free to all and will be a public open day for families and schools.

The event and Leaders Awards sponsorship have been organised by Laura Fogg-Rogers, a Senior Research Fellow in UWE Bristol’s Science Communication Unit, as part of her work on the Children as Engineers project. Activities include having a go with drones, taking on the role of a city planner in a cardboard version of Bristol, and experiencing the latest virtual reality data controllers.

Laura Fogg-Rogers, who has coordinated the event said, “Engineers are highly creative people who can help to solve many of society’s problems. It’s a really collaborative profession, where you have to work together in teams to see your visions and designs come to fruition. The range of roles and careers is really diverse, and that’s what we’d like to emphasise to all young people, particularly girls. You can make your own mark in engineering!”

The public event forms part of UWE’s Week of Engineering, which celebrates the national Year of Engineering alongside International Women in Engineering Day. It will follow a series of activities including the Big Bang Fair at UWE and the Engineering our Future schools event, which will see 240 girls attend UWE to experience being engineers.

 

Alongside the public activities will be an exhibition displaying the shortlisted and winning designs for the South West Leaders Awards. UWE has teamed up with DE&S (part of the Ministry of Defence) this year to sponsor the South West England Region of the Primary Engineer & Secondary Engineer Leaders Award; a national engineering competition for schools.

School pupils answered the question “If you were an engineer what would you do?” by identifying a problem in society that engineering could solve and devising a solution.  UWE students from EngWest Studio will turn one of the winning designs into reality later this year.

This blog was originally published on the Science Communication Unit blog.