Scottish Pupils Transformed into Young Engineers with BAE Systems and the Engineering Development Trust

Pupils from schools in greater Glasgow celebrated their completion of an intensive week-long engineering Skills Camp with BAE Systems and The Engineering Development Trust: an exciting and challenging opportunity to give real-life context to the career aspirations of promising young people.

On Monday, pupils were set a challenge by BAE Systems: design a ship’s cabin to be occupied by six Junior Rates. By Friday, they were ready to present their results to an expert panel of engineers.

Producing professional solutions to a real-life engineering problem has been an impressive achievement for the pupils from Woodfarm High School, Notre Dame High School, Boclair Academy and St. Paul’s High School.

“This has been a wonderful experience,” said pupil Eunice Atuah. “I gained the chance to get a deeper view of the life of an engineer. I learnt skills and techniques that I know will aid me on my future path, and knowledge that will go a long way in my future career.”

To inspire them, teams had the chance to visit a range of departments and talk to experienced mentors about their projects and ideas, learning how to complete their challenge as well as what it’s like to work within the world of engineering.

“At the Engineering Development Trust we encourage the pupils of today to be the engineers and scientists of tomorrow,” said EDT Scotland Director Helen Anderson. “We are thrilled to work with BAE Systems in delivering the opportunity for these young people to experience real life in industry.”

The Skills Camp is set up to replicate the experience of working in a commercial engineering team. Following a professional project timetable, pupils were introduced to the skills needed to excel within one of the UK’s foremost engineering organisations, from technical skills to project management and teamwork.

“The Skills Camp has been a great opportunity to bring young people into our workplace to experience a real-life working environment,” said Caroline Clucas, Head of Early Careers and Skills- Naval Ships. “I hope that the knowledge the young people gained will inspire them to become the engineers of the future.”

In addition to the invaluable experience they’ve gained, all pupils are also eligible for the Industrial Cadets Silver Level Award: a nationally recognised industry-led accreditation, recognising that the teams have taken part in a minimum of 30 hours’ industry-based work experience.

The Skills Camp teams began their week as young people with great promise and the ambition to succeed. They have left as future industry professionals, ready to continue developing the skills and experience they need to achieve their goals.

“The Skills Camp has broadened my knowledge about options after school,” said pupil Sophia Drikakis, “and I am now considering an apprenticeship. I would definitely recommend the Skills Camp experience to other young people!”

The Skills Camp is an intensive version of the Engineering Development Trust’s Engineering Education Scheme (EES): a six-month project-based programme for teams of S5 pupils paired with a local company mentor.

Students from St Pauls High School

Students from Woodfarm High School

Students from Boclair Academy

Students from Notre Dame High School

By Tess Gallacher

Date published: 
October 25, 2017