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92% consider their future careers choices thanks to the Premier Farnell Technology Challenge

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We have some great news to share. Feedback from 400 students that are involved in the Premier Farnell Technology Challenge has reported that 92% of students taking part have said that it has raised their awareness of the different types of careers that are available to them and 94% feel it has given them a better understanding of the variety of skills that are needed for the world of work.

It’s really encouraging to hear that the students, all of whom are aged 16-18 years, have shown that they are already recognising the need to call upon a range of skills to meet the brief; to design and build a prototype of a piece of technology that will help someone with a physical or sensory impairment.

They are firstly challenged to understand the difficulties and barriers faced by those that live with a physical impairment; then they must design a solution; finally they must execute their ideas by creating a prototype.

David Wodje, a Year 13 student from Bradford Academy, comments: “What makes this Challenge so exciting is that it brings people together to share their experiences and different skills. There are so many separate elements of this to consider, it’s not just about answering a question on a piece of paper. One of the other great things is being able to talk and listen to experts in product design and creative media technology to help us develop our ideas.”

Ben Irving, Director of Sixth Form at Hanson Academy in Bradford, comments: “Students are able to use the Challenge to develop skills that go beyond just the core subjects. It also builds confidence, interpersonal skills and teamwork, which are all directly transferable to the workplace.”

In order to address the brief, the groups will have to call upon their knowledge of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) to support their submissions, as well as arts, design and media (ADaM). Creative thought will also play a key role if the students are to be successful.

Delivered as a partnership between Premier Farnell, Leeds Beckett University and Ahead Partnership, 14 schools and colleges from across Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield and Calderdale have signed-up to take part with each school/college having its own competition in November.

The competitions form part of the FutureJobs programme, a service from aspire-igen, Leeds City Region LEP, the Education & Skills Funding Agency and the European Social Fund.

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