Siemens is supporting green engineering by extending its partnership with the Greenpower Education Trust for another five years, until at least 2020.
Siemens said the move will help ensure that Greenpower’s work with schools, colleges and universities to engage more young people in engineering from an early age continues internationally.
Siemens added it has been supporting Greenpower with sponsorship and volunteers since 2009 as part of its education program to inspire and encourage more students to consider engineering as a career. Since then, Greenpower has seen its number of participants grow to 500 schools in the UK, while its number of international participants has increased, with teams from America, South Africa and Europe.
This Sunday, October 12, Greenpower will run its first ever International Final, at Goodwood Motor Circuit, which will host more than 100 competing teams from the UK, the U.S., South Africa, Poland, Portugal and Ireland.
“Siemens is one of our oldest, biggest and most important partners,” said Greenpower CEO, Jeremy Way. “They truly understand what we are trying to do at Greenpower Education Trust at a base level – the UK is in dire need of an influx of new, young engineers and there is nothing in the current school curriculum that will deliver it. We are trying to plug that gap, with the help of companies like Siemens, by providing students and young people with a project-based learning activity that gives them the hands-on, practical experience they will need, as well as the inspiration to choose a career in engineering that they might otherwise not have selected.”
Greenpower also said the UK engineering industry needs 1.86 million new people with the requisite skills between 2010 and 2020, meaning that the number of engineering-related apprentices and graduates needs to double.
The Greenpower initiative is open to students of all ages, from primary school level to university undergraduates. The charity runs three race championships – Goblins (9-11 year olds), IET Formula 24 (11-16 year olds) and IET Formula 24+ (16-25 year olds) – in which students design and build all-electric racecars for the series.
The International Final will feature the finale of the IET Formula 24 and IET Formula 24+ seasons, as well as the Greenpower Corporate Challenge, which features teams from businesses including Jaguar Land Rover, Prodrive and Lockheed Martin.
Siemens added it is developing a Global Technology Partnership with Greenpower to support the global expansion of the initiative, with recent progress in several new territories – a delegation of teachers from Belgium and China is expected to attend the International Final in order to see first-hand how they might set up the Greenpower Challenge in their own countries.
Meanwhile, students from the Mandela School of Science & Technology from Mvezo, South Africa, which is also supported by Siemens, will be competing; it will be the first time that any of the students have traveled outside of South Africa.