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‘We hope to inspire the next generation’ Unique event is hailed a success

PUBLISHED: 12:55 14 February 2020 | UPDATED: 13:55 14 February 2020

The STEMpower tech fair for Year 8 female students at East Coast College Lowestoft camous. Picture: EDF Energy

The STEMpower tech fair for Year 8 female students at East Coast College Lowestoft camous. Picture: EDF Energy

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Events aimed at inspiring more female students to pursue careers in the energy and construction sectors have been hailed a success.

Sizewell B apprentice Suzie Jones with Stuart Rimmer, Principal of East Coast College. Picture: EDF EnergySizewell B apprentice Suzie Jones with Stuart Rimmer, Principal of East Coast College. Picture: EDF Energy

More than 50 girls from high schools across Suffolk and Norfolk descended on the Energy Skills Centre at East Coast College in Lowestoft on Tuesday, February 12 for an interactive STEMpower tech fair.

The Year 8 students then enjoyed a tour of the Sizewell B nuclear power station on Wednesday as part of special events organised by the ECITB (Engineering Construction Industry Training Board), EDF Energy, East Coast College, EEEGR and New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership.

With the aim of inspiring more females into those sectors, the events were held this week to ignite interest in STEM subjects and make the most of the engineering and energy boom across Suffolk and Norfolk.

Supported by local businesses the Year 8 students got to grips with drones, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), 3D printing and robotics during the two-day tech fair as they were wowed at the STEMpower event.

The girls - from schools including Bungay High, Pakefield High, Benjamin Britten Academy, Alde Valley Academy, Ormiston Denes High, SET Beccles Free School and East Point Academy - met women working in science and engineering, as the event was supported by The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas).

Jon Yates, Sizewell B station director, said: "We hope to inspire the next generation of workers in the energy industry.

"Nuclear power has an important role in tackling climate change and the students joining the event could one day play their part either at Sizewell B or C or with one of the renewable projects on the East coast."

Chris Claydon, ECITB CEO, said: "This event has been designed to feed the increasing appetite among young people to explore the full range of training and career opportunities in the energy industry.

"It will provide a unique opportunity to talk directly to and inspire potential employees, and showcase companies' investment in young people and the future."

Rachel Bunn, vice principal of East Coast College, said: "East Coast College is excited to be part of this ECITB programme to support young females to consider a career in the engineering sector.

"This unique regional event will allow pupils to engage with local companies, use emerging technologies to aid their learning as well as access careers advice on possible routes into the sector."

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