5 4 3 2 1: young engineers lift off for exciting new project

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An exciting project to put rocket and robot technologies into the hands of children and young people in Nottinghamshire is set to blast off this summer.

Led by the Young Engineers team at Joseph Whitaker School, Rainworth, and funded by Rotary, STEM Together will engage up to 200 school pupils and community group members in learning engineering skills.

Not just for young people, STEM Together is an inter-generational project involving schools, Brownie, Cub and Scout packs, older people’s groups and organisations supporting vulnerable members of the community.

Covering Ravenshead, Blidworth and Rainworth and surrounding areas, the project was first conceived by the Blidworth Community Association.

Jon Rea, chairman of the Association, said: “This will help develop the next generation of young engineers and give the community a chance to get involved in science and technology learning.

“We want to create opportunities to help address the skills gaps, improve attainment and support the employability of local people. It’s a great way for people of all ages to learn together”

There are two main strands to the initiative. The rocket car learning programme requires participants to build a vehicle and perform a series of aerodynamics tests. Students are also taught about health and safety with explosives and how to use basic tools.

The mini-bot challenge meanwhile requires learns to make a small remote-controlled robot, and teaches basic electronic circuits, radio frequencies and proper use of tools.

The Young Engineers at Joseph Whitaker School is an award-winning team of GCSE and A-level students who work together in pursuit of engineering excellence. It is on of the leading groups of its kind in the country, winning Young Engineers Club of the Year in 2013, and holds the world land speed record for a rocket powered model car—533 miles per hour set last year during a test at Rolls Royce in Hucknall.

Richard Lord of Ravenshead and Blidworth Rotary club said: “We are pleased to make a significant financial contribution to the project. I’m looking forward to participating in the workshops and to the finale competition at Joseph Whitaker School on Saturday July 11.”