Acton Pupils To Design Heathrow Terminals

Berrymede could produce engineers of the future

Children from an Acton primary school will be showing off their construction skills by building their own mini-terminals at the annual Heathrow Primary School Challenge.

Youngsters aged 10 -11 from Berrymede will be taking part (on 11th September) in the annual Heathrow Primary School Challenge. It's designed to develop creativity, teach basic construction concepts and introduce them at an early age to careers in construction and engineering.

It is run each year in the five boroughs surrounding the airport; Ealing, Hounslow, Hillingdon, Slough and Spelthorne. This year – the seventh the Challenge has been running - a record fifty one schools and over 3,300 pupils will be taking part.

Jeremy King, Chartered Civil Engineer and school activity provider, runs the session – aided by Heathrow staff volunteers

Jeremy King says: ‘Each year I am overwhelmed by the creativity of the students and their innovative designs. Many of these students could be the engineers of the future and it is our responsibility to equip them with the skills and inspiration to make this a reality. The Heathrow Challenge is a great opportunity for the students to practice their future life/work skills such as planning, teamwork and communication.’

Sundeep Sangha, Heathrow’s Economic Development Manager, says: ‘Heathrow makes a huge contribution to local employment, supporting over 100,000 jobs in the surrounding area. We have a responsibility to ensure the workforce of tomorrow is aware of the wide range of career opportunities at the airport and is inspired to strive for them.’ 

The Heathrow Primary School Challenge began seven years ago in order to broaden local student’s awareness of employment opportunities at Heathrow.

Many children in the boroughs surrounding the airport will expect to work there in the future but may not be aware of the full range of careers available, particularly those in engineering, or what they would need to study to be eligible for them.

Whilst engineers are critical to the airport’s operations, they are in short supply. Engineering UK* estimates that Britain needs to double the number of recruits into engineering to meet demand. Yet just 20 per cent of 12-16 year olds express any knowledge of what people working in engineering do, and just 3% of all GCSEs taken in 2012 were in physics - a key subject for those wishing to study engineering at university.


August 29th 2013



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