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Ingenuity pays off for six bright sparks from a Basingstoke school who visit Motorola Solutions
BRIGHT young sparks showed their ingenuity when they were asked to design products to assist the emergency services.
Around 80 finalists spent the day at Motorola Solutions UK’s EMEA head office in Jays Close, on the Viables Industrial Estate, in Basingstoke, including six talented young women from Everest Community Academy.
They were among fifteen groups of Year 8 and Year 9 school students who had beaten competition from 800 pupils across 27 Hampshire schools to get to the finals of the Tomorrow’s Engineers Save the Day challenge.
During the day, they found out about engineering technology in a variety of cutting-edge Motorola Solutions communications products.
They also received first-hand engineering careers advice from the company’s engineers.
The Everest team, called The Purple Elephants, came up with an ingenious device called The Pocket Pop-up – a pocket-sized inflatable cushion designed to be used by the emergency services to move obstructions, such as fallen trees.
Along with the other finalists, they were interrogated about their product idea by a panel of industry experts from Motorola Solutions in a Dragons’ Den-style pitch.
At the event, organised by Engineering UK and the National Schools Partnership, the students also had the opportunity to talk to members of Hampshire Fire and Rescue and Hampshire Police as well as members of the Caterham Formula One team.
The day included learning about new technology such as indestructible tablet devices and barcode scanners that can scan and count 50 items in seconds.
Motorola Solutions UK chairman Graeme Hobbs said: “ It is really encouraging to see the next generation so enthusiastic about it and we are very happy to have had them visit us for the day and I think it is particularly exciting to see such a high proportion of young women among the group – 80 per cent of the participants were female which bodes well for the future of the UK’s engineering sector.”
Everest Community Academy teacher Simon Blay, who accompanied the students, said: “It’s great to take kids out of the education world and it’s important they meet real engineers.”
Among his charges was Katie Vaughan, who said: “It’s interesting to see engineering in the real world. If you’re in a place like this it really helps you think about where studies could lead you.”