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On Wednesday 5th November 8 Year 9 pupils from Trent descended on the Engineering Department at The University of Nottingham to take part in 'A Robotics Challenge'.
The Year 9 students were selected based on their overall grades in Design and Technology so far this academic year. They benefited from a day of learning new ideas and insightful innovations which allowed them to then have the opportunity to build a robot beetle.
The event was sponsored by the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel electric locomotives, Caterpillar. The challenge day started with students being given a presentation about the fundamental aspects of working in Engineering and what a potential career at a leading manufacturer such as Caterpillar would entail. The students were then escorted into one of the University’s labs to work on building their own Robot Beetle.
Jan Rigley, Teacher of Design and Technology at Trent said, "The students were amazed by all the different areas of Engineering and having the opportunity to not only take part in hands on activities, but also to hear from industry professionals was a real benefit for them.”
The afternoon activities were also not to be missed. As well as presenting to the students, Caterpillar had come well equipped with one of their Diggers. The challenge was set, the students had to work hard to pick up a rugby ball using the Digger – not something you would learn every day at school, but the students all worked very hard.
Paul Taylor, Deputy Head (Academics) at Trent comments, "The enthusiasm from all involved in this challenge has been fantastic. Students benefit from taking part in particular activities, such as these, that stretch them beyond the restrictions of exam specifications and allows them to explore the opportunities and experiences that will potentially be available to them in their future careers."
Lucy Rose, The University of Nottingham comments, “It is wonderful for The University of Nottingham to be in a position of being able to provide some insight into Higher Education for younger students and that companies such as Caterpillar are in partnership with us to promote Engineering as a degree course and as a potential career path for bright young minds. Our staff and students are so enthusiastic about engineering that they really enjoy having an opportunity to pass that on and we really enjoyed hosting our visitors from Trent College and hope to welcome them back as undergraduates in the future”.