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Eco Engineer Challenge - Judging Event ​​​​​​​

120 pupils from Redlands Primary School and Hillside Primary School took part in the ‘Grand Finale’ of their term-long project ‘UTC Reading Eco Engineers Challenge’.

The challenge consisted of pupils dividing into small groups to design an Eco House using AutoCAD software and using their engineering and mathematical knowledge, along with the support of their teachers over the autumn term.

On Thursday 14 December pupils setup displays in the main hall at UTC Reading to show what they had designed and how they had completed the project. They were questioned by judges from leading engineering and construction industries as to their final designs, and what led them to the final idea.

In addition, each group then gave a short presentation on their project to a panel of industry judges, designed to show what they had learnt during the challenge. Judges then decided on a winner and runner-up.

Well done to all of the students involved in this project, who wowed the judges and came up with some fantastic ideas. 

At the end of the event, all students received a goodie bag with prizes from the sponsors - The IET, IMechE and CITB.

Many thanks to Luke Gray and Naomi Guild from Kier Construction, James Cody from AWE, Peter Lawrence from Rockwell Collins and Kevin Lewis from The IET for judging, to Anna Collett from Redlands Primary School and Sarah Ezard from Hillside Primary School and to the sponsors of the challenge The IET, IMechE and CITB.

For all photographs from the event, please visit our Gallery Album on the website.

Here is what our industry judges said about the event…

“AWE is committed to supporting and inspiring young learners in the important STEM subjects. We were very pleased to be involved with the UTC’s Eco Engineer Event. The students produced some really innovate and unique ideas. Hopefully some of them will be the Engineers of the future!” James Cody, AWE

"It’s been great to see the enthusiasm for engineering from the young students. At Rockwell Collins we’re very keen to promote diversity and to encourage the girls as well as the boys, and it’s important we do that and engage them at this age. It’s been great going around and talking to them, hearing about all their different ideas and seeing them engage with the mathematics behind the engineering as well. They’ve clearly all had a great time doing this and I think it’s a great introduction to engineering for them.” Peter Lawrence, Rockwell Collins

“It’s been brilliant to see young people getting involved in sustainable and renewable construction methods, as in my industry, Kier in particular, we’re coming across more and more sustainable, renewable energy systems, so it’s great to see them introduced to that at an early age and getting an understanding of it.” Luke Gray, Kier

"I really enjoyed the Eco Engineer Event and was very impressed by the children’s and teacher’s enthusiasm and the quality of the work done. It was great to see that this passion was evident at both schools that took part. This is a great tribute to the children and the teachers and great to see that the project was found to be interesting and engaging. Just as the children were keen to do more activities like this, I would too! Thanks to all at UTC and the schools that made this happen!" Kevin Lewis, IET Berks 

…and here is what Redlands Primary School teacher and UTC Reading STEM Co-ordinator said:

“We were invited to join this project and when we looked at the brief, we thought it would be something different to what we can provide ourselves, and we felt the emphasis on team work and engineering skills would be really useful for children of this age.

They’ve been positive, enthusiastic, and worked brilliantly as part of a team. The engineering and design side has been something that we perhaps wouldn’t have had the skills to provide as a primary school, so the STEM aspect of this has really enhanced our work.

If they hadn’t thought about engineering as a career path before, they will be doing after this project!" Catherine Kington, teacher at Redlands Primary

 “I am happy that the inaugural UTC Reading Eco Home Challenge was such a success and am looking forward to running this competition for many years to come.

It has been a pleasure to reach so many Primary School students and to give them their first glimpse of a possible engineering career.” Lewis Hutchinson, UTC Reading

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