Local Schools Compete In Engineering Challenge At Ford

Around 100 boys from seven Essex schools are set to compete against each other in a series of hands-on science and engineering challenges at Ford's Dunton Technical Centre today.

The Event, called BETSET (Boys Entering Tomorrow's Science Engineering and Technology) is one of many initiatives undertaken by Ford to introduce young people to possible future careers in industry and follow on from the GETSET (girls) event that was held at Dunton in December last year.

Dave Russell, Education Outreach and Community Manager, who will be opening the event commented: "The day is designed to be fun but has a serious purpose. With a national shortfall in skilled engineers, over the next few years, we need to encourage both women and men to consider the wide range of opportunities open to engineers.

"To help meet that challenge, Ford, both locally and nationally, seeks to encourage young people to consider IT and engineering as career options, whether or not that career is with Ford or elsewhere in British industry."

The year-nine boys from schools in Southend, Chelmsford, Canvey Island, Rayleigh, Corringham and Grays, will spend the day at Dunton and undertake engineering based challenges ranging from building a vehicle to carry one person to creating a charging station for a solar powered buggy.

The boys will be split into teams and assigned a Ford engineer as a mentor. A team of judges made up of teachers and Ford personnel will award points for their efforts and the day culminates with a race of solar powered buggies and a prize giving ceremony. The winning teams from each session will be given framed sketches from the Ford Design team.

Ford Engineers have organised the event with External Agencies SETPOINT Essex and The BA.

Published : 30/04/03 Author : Melanie Carter

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