Students take part in design challenge

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Innovative students from Saint John Houghton Catholic Voluntary Academy in Ilkeston put their design skills to the test during a competition.

Megan Derrick, Kathryn Mendonca, Olivia Bainbridge, Kelsey Vernon, Ciara Roberts and Georgia Clarke, from years eight and nine, all took part in the design challenge at the University of Derby.

The brief was to design and build a mini cargo transporter with the aim of allowing young people to participate in engineering as part of their science, technology and engineering studies.

Megan Derrick is studying GCSE design technology at Saint John Houghton CVA in Kirk Hallam.

She said: “I didn’t really know what to expect when we came here but I’ve had a really good time.

“I was a bit unsure when we started out making our product but it was fine once we got into it.”

Kathryn Mendonca said she thoroughly enjoyed spending the day at the University of Derby.

She said: “It was a bit nerve-wracking and towards the end we thought our design didn’t work properly but we got there in the end and I think we worked well as a team.

“We’ve done challenges in school but never anything like this before up against other schools. Taking part has made me really excited about product design.”

Matt Price, head of design technology, said: “It has been an excellent opportunity for our students to be faced with real life engineering problems.”