Introducing students to engineering

An engineering student uses the lathe at Kirk Hallam Community, Technology and Sports College.
An engineering student uses the lathe at Kirk Hallam Community, Technology and Sports College.

An event aimed at showcasing the great work being done by Erewash manufacturing and engineering firms will also open students’ eyes to new opportunities in the world of work.

That is the hope of Aidan Smith, vice-principal of Kirk Hallam Community, Technology and Sports College, who told us the event at the school’s Lakeside Hall next week is a ‘fantastic’ opportunity for youngsters thinking of a career in the industries.

The event, organised by Erewash Partnership, is a unique chance to see many of the town’s most succesful firms all in one place.

And students may even be offered apprenticeships at the exhibition on Wednesday.

“If we can get a couple of apprenticeships out of this, that would be fantastic,” he said.

“And for the kids to see where there work could lead to is just great – it’s tough in this environment at the moment and youngsters need all the help they can get.”

The school’s academic specialism in technology and its membership of Erewash Partnership for the last 10 years has seen it forge links with succesful firms in the local area, including Atlas Composites in Ilkeston and TecQuipment in Long Eaton, who have shared their expertise with pupils.

To boot, the school offers a very rare engineering course to students.

And one pupil Naomi Kinlock, 16, has recently secured an apprenticeship with Rolls Royce.

“That’s a real feather in our cap,” said Mr Smith.

He explained a bit about the course, which is attended by 32 students in two groups.

“The course is precision engineering and it’s is very computer-based, which is something students don’t always expect,” he said.

“We’ve got some amazing equipment in school, like laser cutters and a 3D printer, which is incredible to see in action.”

On the back of the event, organisers are hoping to encourage the further involvement of local manufacturing businesses in schools to help promote manufacturing and engineering as careers.

They are also hoping parents will attend with their children to have a look at a perhaps less-explored option for their children’s futures.

Students from other schools in the area are also encouraged to come along to see what career opportunities are available on their doorstep.

Chairman of Erewash Partnership Ian Viles said: “As businesses have to plan ahead we are keen to see people with the relevant experience and youngsters interested in careers in manufacturing and engineering attend this prestigious event.”