Wimbledon High School hosted a STEM Career Fair for their Year 9 students (13/14 year olds) on the evening of the 18th November.
Kalisha, Anna and myself (Florencia) had the opportunity to meet a wonderful bunch of clever young women interested in finding out more about what STEM careers involves. We discussed what sort of roles they could be perusing in the future if they decided to take a career in the sciences.
It was rewarding to see their genuine interest in our profession and the questions they were coming up with, some of which proved to be quite challenging to answer. By the end of the evening we had a great feeling that we had successfully engaged with the students and gained their interest in engineering, or at least clarified what engineering actually involves and the different types of engineering choices.
To finalise the evening, we proposed to build some marshmallow and spaghetti towers. Unsurprisingly they were brilliant at it.
Back in September four Ramboll graduates took part in the annual Engineering Education Scheme. The scheme is run annually and aims to encourage more Year 12 students to take up engineering as a career. Ramboll mentored a team of students from Wimbledon High School (WHS), continuing the long-term partnership with the school.
The graduates, James Tearle, Anish Patel, Riccardo Pedroni & Philippe Ayache, set five students from WHS the challenge of designing a new bespoke staircase to form the main focal point of Ramboll’s new office in London.
The students had no experience with engineering before the scheme and were mentored through the 6 month process from September to March. Initially they developed concept ideas and undertook relevant research such as material properties. By Christmas, the team had assessed all their design contributions to the project and developed a design that they all agreed to progress further.
In the New Year the team attended a residential workshop at the University of Surrey. The two days were a valuable experience for the girls as they were able to see laboratory material testing which allowed them to see practically what they had researched about material properties. The team also constructed a scale model of their design so they could better understand how their structure worked.
In April they presented at the regional final at BP Sunbury and were able to explain to the judges the various engineering work that they had undertaken during the scheme. The girls have gone on to present at the regional ‘Big Bang’ competition and have progressed to the National Science and Engineering Competition. Two of the students have also since undertaken work experience placements with Ramboll this summer.