On 16th October 2014 two representatives from WES Bath, Mendy and myself, attended the Teen Tech event at the Bristol Pavillion. The aim of the event was to show teenagers the wide range of topics covered by the field of engineering, and explain where a career in engineering could lead them. The event was attended by a wide range of organisations, including Rolls-Royce and Airbus, each of whom performed interactive demonstrations to 300 senior school students from local schools. The wide range of participating organisations allowed for multiple engineering disciplines to be investigated by the students who gained a greater understanding of what engineering actually entails.
The WES Bath demonstration revolved around electrical engineering and involved an mbed circuit board that could play muscial tunes, make coloured led lights flash and display text on a small, lcd screen. We began the demonstration by asking the students if they could name any areas of engineering, and the majority of the answers we received were focussed around cars, engines and planes. We explained that engineering also covered areas including designing buildings and bridges, working with chemicals and designing wind turbines as examples.
The students appeared to enjoy our demonstration, and left our stand with a greater understanding of what engineering was and which school subjects were most important for a career involving engineering. They also appeared to be more comfortable with the concept of coding which was shown to be more straightforward than they had imagined. The WES Bath stand was very well received, and we were invited to return to demonstrate again at the following Teen Tech event in London.