A unique partnership between industry and the military is tackling the UK's shortage of scientists and engineers with the largest ever schools programme of its kind - a nationwide science and engineering roadshow.
BAE Systems, the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force have joined forces to launch a nationwide schools engineering and science roadshow, which is set to reach a record 420 schools and 90,000 students this year.
With the Royal Navy joining the programme in 2016, the schools roadshow has additional resources to visit schools in Edinburgh; Nottingham; Scarborough; Middlesbrough; Salisbury; Swindon; Ipswich; Hastings, and Plymouth.
Since its inception in 2005, the Royal Air Force and BAE Systems have brought the roadshow to more than 365,000 young people at 2,200 schools.
Launched at the St. Marylebone Church of England School in London, this year’s roadshow marks the eleventh year of the initiative and provides a highly visual, educational and interactive theatre presentation for primary and secondary school children.
The theme of 2016’s roadshow focuses on the science of ‘waves’ – highlighting three key forms: sound, light and water.
The practical demonstrations used in the show will help pupils understand how the physics of waves and engineering are used in the real world by aircraft and naval engineers – assisting teachers in tackling a difficult part of the national curriculum for science.
Human resources director of programmes and support at BAE Systems, John Whelan commented: This helps meet the overwhelming demand for our roadshow from teachers and brings science, engineering, technology and maths to life for even more young people.’
Rear Admiral John Clink, flag officer sea training (FOST) for the Royal Navy added: “The two new 65,000 tonne Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers, entering our service, are but one example of people with STEM skills developing technological solutions to complex problems.
“It is my belief that events such as this will inspire the next generation to want to play a part in this technological journey so vital for the prosperity of the UK.”
Air Commodore Chris Elliott, director of ground training for the Royal Air Force, said: “The Royal Air Force’s theme for 2016 is Innovation, Inspiration and Youth.
“Science, technology, engineering and mathematics are at the heart of this and are central to the Royal Air Force’s role as a service operating with cutting-edge technology. This enterprise with BAE Systems and the Royal Navy allows us to demonstrate this and inspire the next generation. “