Cambridge Consultants inspire the next generation of STEM innovators
Cambridge Consultants invited Year 7 students from Bottisham Village College, Netherhall School, Stephen Perse Foundation Senior School and Swavesey Village College to apply to attend a STEM project day. They were challenged to identify an issue that affects people in their day-to-day lives and design a technological solution to solve that problem.
The winning students visited the Cambridge Consultants office in Cambridge Science Park and were treated to an activity-packed day, where they had the opportunity to meet employees in different roles across the organisation, learn about the product design process and get stuck in to an engineering design project.
The students were tasked with designing a tool that would help people with one arm to eat a boiled egg more easily. After meeting with end-users to understand their challenges and experiences, the students investigated current solutions available on the market and then worked together to brainstorm and design their products. They also had the opportunity to produce egg holders with a 3D printer and learn about robotics, including how to programme a robot arm to move lego bricks.
The five students from Netherhall School really impressed the Cambridge Consultants judges with their personal development throughout the day, as well as their teamwork, presentation and problem-solving skills. They will attend a prize trip that will take place in July, alongside students from other schools and colleges that are taking part in Cambridge LaunchPad.
Year 7 students from Stephen Perse Foundation Senior School, said "The day has been good because you have many opportunities and things to do, like talk to different engineers. It has been great for teamwork and to try out new things. We like STEM because you can understand the world better, and things that we did can be used in many jobs."
Laura Heard, Head of Product Design at Netherhall School, said: "What an amazing, well-structured day and an inspiring introduction to potential future careers. The activities were interactive and engaging and I think all the students will take away new skills. As a teacher, we are always looking for ways to inspire our students - this day succeeded!"
Vicky Larmour, Cambridge Consultants, said "The day has been tremendous fun from start to finish - over the day we took the children through the life of a typical client project and the energy and enthusiasm that the children brought to all the tasks was amazing. I will certainly sleep well tonight! Almost a hundred staff volunteered to help with the day, from all areas of the organisation, and I very much look forward to running another day with other partner schools in the future."
Richard Hall, Chief Operations Officer for Cambridge Consultants, said "Today has been a great opportunity for us to inspire a love of STEM in the next generation - and in turn to be inspired by their creativity, innovation and excitement. Getting involved with Launchpad has enabled our staff to feel that they are giving something back and using their talents to the fullest."
Anna Aldred, STEM Outreach and Cambridge LaunchPad Project Manager from Form the Future CIC, said "Cambridge Consultants created a programme of activities that tested a wide range of the students' skills including teamwork, innovative thinking, presentation and communication. The students rose to the challenges magnificently, pushing the boundaries of their existing knowledge and skills to show very positive personal development over the course of the day."
For more information:
Michelle Yung, Form the Future CIC