Manufacturing Challenge Day Inspires Young Talent

  • MADE Manufacturing Challenge Day winners

Five local schools presented their projects to a panel of independent judges at the Torbay MADE Manufacturing Challenge Finals.

Pupils from Paignton Community and Sports Academy, St Cuthbert Mayne School, The Spires College, Torquay Academy and Torquay Boy’s Grammar School demonstrated the skills and expertise they had learned by working with local engineering companies as part of the MADE project.

The MADE project encourages businesses and educators to work collaboratively and develop activities which challenge and stimulate to ensure young people are sufficiently equipped with the necessary skills and competencies required to be employed within the engineering and manufacturing sector.

Torbay’s Elected Mayor and Chairman of South Devon Manufacturing Forum, Gordon Oliver, said: “This event celebrates the completion of the second year of delivery of the Torbay MADE project, rewarding the participation of local students and thanking the Hi Tech Manufacturing businesses and schools for their participation in the project.

“This project is significantly enhancing and supporting provision in a new and engaging way and is an inclusive solution to youth engagement with the manufacturing sector in Torbay, assisting and enhancing efforts to redress the imbalance for the skills required by local manufacturing businesses and inspiring the next generation of engineers.”

The winning team were The Spires College, who partnered with Spirent for their project. Spirent, who are based in Paignton, design and manufacture test equipment for Global Navigations Satellite Systems such as GPS, and for related navigation systems.

Congratulations to Lauren Layne, Sophie Woodcock, Sophie McCuaig, Gracie-Lou Gillard, Catalina Georgescu, Katlyn Davies-Shaw and Keira Vango on winning the award with their bespoke desk tidy.

One of the key aims of the MADE project is to inspire girls into engineering and 85% the Manufacturing Challenge Day finalists were female.

Deborah Passmore, Partnership Executive at TDA, said: “It is a pleasure to be able to deliver days like this as part of our continued drive to inspire and excite young people in STEM. The project would not be the success it is without the continued support of local businesses. Their support in delivering these activities gives the students an engaging, real life experience of working in the manufacturing and engineering sector.”

1,893 young people have participated in MADE activities to date, with 13 schools, 25 businesses and 160 STEM ambassadors engaged in the project.

TDA has secured a further £40,000 from the Futureworks programme to deliver phase 2 of the MADE Project.

Phase 2 includes the continued delivery of Techbay: Engineering Your Future event, which takes place on Thursday 9 November. TechBay is a unique, hands-on, interactive experience showcasing the latest technologies, engaging and exciting the next generation of scientists, engineers and hi tech engineers.

The benefits of getting involved with MADE as a business

TDA is looking for more businesses to take part in the next phase of the MADE project. We've recently spoken to some of the businesses which have been involved in the last two years to find out what they thought:

"Torbay is a wonderful area for both business and personal location. Effect Photonics based in Brixham is investing in the future of telecommunications with cutting edge next generation products. We are enthusiastic to encourage future technical contributors though STEM activities in local schools.  It is very rewarding to see the excitement and ingenuity of the boys and girls as they progress through the MADE projects."

- Tim Durrant, Project Manager at Effect Photonics

"The team came up with a concept which they developed and prototyped to the point that they had a number of impressive samples. They then created a presentation for the MADE final in Torquay. With some fine tuning, the winning product prototype could have been developed to the point where Hymid could use it for promotional purposes."

- Andy Tettmar, Design Director at Hymid Multi-Shot

Find out more about Hymid Multi-Shot's experience of the MADE project.

How to get involved

If you are a business interested in supporting the MADE project by offering mentoring or work experience please email Debbie Passmore on Deborah.passmore@tedcltd.com or call 01803 208378.