Horbury Academy has been awarded £7,250 through the Engineering Education Grant Scheme (EEGS). The scheme, which is run by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), provides support for UK-based educational projects which increase engineering knowledge in young people. It aims to engage young people aged 4-19 in learning about engineering and to develop the professional skills of those involved in supporting Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) learning and careers awareness.
Dr Alice Bunn, CEO at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, said: “Horbury Academy’s STEAM Scouts project is a fantastic example of the kind of projects the EEGS scheme aims to promote. The UK is facing a critical engineering skills shortage and showing young people how creative and exciting engineering can be is a key way of inspiring the engineers of tomorrow”.
David Lakin, Head of Education at the Institution of Engineering and Technology, said: “In order to tackle the engineering skills gap, we need more graduates and apprentices to enter the profession, and this can only happen if more school-age children – girls as well as boys – are attracted to, and choose to study Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths subjects. The IET and IMechE are investing considerable resource in EEGS to support vital projects like STEAM Scouts, which highlight the exciting, creative and rewarding world of engineering careers to young people.”
Organisations capable of developing and delivering UK-based educational activities are eligible to apply to the EEGS scheme.
Horbury Academy’s Teacher of Science, Miss Major, is the project lead. She said: “There are two levels of funding available. Awards of up to £5,000 are available for standard applications, with a limited number of awards up to £15,000, so it’s an honour to have been awarded this amount, with the highest level of support being available to us should our project show significant impact.
“STEAM Scouts is a weekly enrichment club incorporating all aspects of STEAM, with a large part dedicated to engineering. Open to years 7 to 10, it sees pupils complete themed activities, online challenges and take part in Trust-wide events and trips.
“This year’s theme is “What if Disney had STEAM?” in which pupils will look at specific Disney films and characters and complete STEAM-related tasks around them. For example, this week, pupils will consider how to make a non-melting Olaf by looking at the difference between physical and chemical changes. Such activities will allow pupils to continue to build on their practical STEAM skills, whilst having the opportunity to earn achievements by applying those skills correctly.
“Pupils will also have the opportunity to deliver STEAM sessions to younger pupils within our Trust primary schools and to take part in a STEAM Scout Show towards the end of the year, with the aim of showcasing their engineering skills.”
Horbury Academy’s Principal, Mrs Walker, said: “As an academy, we feel privileged to have been recognised in this way. A lot of hard work has gone into bringing this project to life and the work produced is already to a high standard. It’s particularly great to see Year 10 STEAM Scouts working with our younger pupils, helping to build their all-important STEAM skills which will hopefully go some way towards bridging the skills gap.”