Inspiring Future Engineers

Recently, Osborne as part of our on-going commitment to helping encourage interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) careers presented an assembly at Woodstock school in Oxfordshire to a group of children aged between 5 and 11 years old.
The children were given an insight into the plethora of diverse roles which are crucial to the world of civil engineering. This was followed by a focus on bridges, their function in society and how we design and build them. Two volunteers were picked from the assembly to replicate the launch of Leigh Road Bridge using a scale model bridge, a skateboard, a house brick and a model railway under the guidance of Highways Director, Jamie Harrison.

This was followed up by a video showing how the bridge was installed. The assembly was concluded by illustrating the importance of civil engineering in a light hearted manner by showing an amusing old newsreel of the Tacoma Narrows ‘Galloping Gertie’ Bridge famously collapsing in 1940 which captured their interest.

Fran Long is a Teacher at Woodstock School, she commented:

“The assembly was very inspiring.  The younger pupils loved the high number of quality images and lack of text on slides.  This is something I will communicate to other presenters as it was a real strength and made it very accessible to younger pupils.  Their engagement was very evident in their questioning.  The videos were excellent and really brought it all to life, as did the model bridge.”

Greg Wall, Design Manager for Infrastructure at Osborne said:

“Events like this are both fun for us to get involved in, but are also crucial to the future of the industry. It’s an important part of our obligations as professional engineers to give something back to the communities in which we work and live in. We were a little nervous about how well the material would relate to primary school children, but they were really engaged and even asked some difficult questions. Hopefully we inspired a few future engineers, construction managers, machine drivers and scaffolders of the future.”