Lining up the Next Generation of Engineers
Last week the Nexus Engineering Training Centre welcomed 120 students from local secondary schools and colleges to its third 'Pathways into Engineering' event. Minibuses arrived from Lynn Grove Academy, Cliff Park Ormiston Academy, Sir John Leman High School, Pakefield High School, University Technical College Norfolk and East Norfolk Sixth Form College to take part.
The event is a new initiative to encourage young people in Norfolk into engineering by giving students a picture of what local companies actually look like from the inside. Personnel from local industry attend to meet students and give talks to illustrate the career opportunities available locally and further afield, including key players in the offshore energy sector representing wind, oil and gas, and nuclear technologies. Amongst the attendees were offshore companies Seajacks UK, James Fisher Marine Services, Pharos Marine and Vattenfall; other local fabrication and construction companies included Round House, Gee Force Hydraulics, Morgan Sindall Group, API Technologies and Linkx Packaging.
OPITO (global skills body for the energy industry) and ECITB (Engineering Construction Industry Training Board), icanbea, East Coast and East Norfolk VI Form Colleges were also at the event to give talks about college and university courses, apprenticeships and information about life offshore. In the afternoon the students were given walking tours of the factories of Pharos Marine and Gee Force on the Beacon Industrial Park to get a closer view of the work involved.
Nexus is a purpose-built engineering training centre fitted with specialist industry standard equipment. Working hand-in-hand with the advanced engineering sector, Nexus trains the next generation of engineers and raises the profile of engineering. The Centre provides continuous professional development for skilled engineers – from energy to advanced manufacturing – with training and refresher courses in CAD/CAM.
'Pathways into Engineering' is part of its educational programme for local schools. Last year the Centre launched the Inter School Construction Challenge, when 70 children from 5 local schools took part in a competition supported by builders Morgan Sindall and Pleasurewood Hills. The next Challenge will take place in March 2019.
It has also received funding to take enrichment programmes into neighbouring schools, including (i) ‘Introduction to Engineering' (funded by Business in the Community and Neighbourhoods at Work), which is being rolled out in 15 local primary schools to raise awareness of the different types of engineering roles; (ii) the ‘Lego Construction Activity’ (funded by the Royal Academy of Engineers), which will be taken into 10 local secondary schools to encourage STEM.
To find out more about Nexus' schools or CPD programmes contact Bob Beard:
T: 01493 742336 E: firstname.lastname@example.org