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Orkney Pupils Rise to #STEM Innovation Challenge

Young people from schools across Orkney showcased their innovation at a recent STEM Celebration event organised by SCDI’s Young Engineers and Science Club (YESC). They displayed an amazing range of different activities, experiments and research projects that the schools and clubs had been taking part in over the school year.

5 pupils at Evie school
Pupils from Evie Community School. Image credit: Ken Amer

Around 70 young people gathered to compete in a variety of Science Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) challenges set by industry who provided an insight of the different career paths available in the STEM sector.

Schools received a free STEM Resource kit to take part in the Pylon Challenge. Their models were designed to take renewable electricity from an offshore tidal energy turbine to homes across the islands, were tested on the day.

Thomas Wild, Head of YESC said:

“YESC aims to inspire the next generation of STEM leaders and our event, supported by Orbital Marine Power and SSEN Transmission, brought pupils and schools together from across Orkney to have fun whilst learning. The celebration inspires pupils to showcase their innovation and helps them develop valuable skills and knowledge whilst encouraging uptake in STEM subjects and careers.”

The event was delivered through funding from SSEN Transmission and Orbital Marine Power.

Jeni Herbert, SSEN Transmission Community Liaison Manager said:

“We were delighted to support the Future of STEM event in Orkney, and were really impressed with the enthusiasm, creativity and teamwork that pupils showed when addressing the STEM challenges presented to them.  With so many exciting projects being developed in the area as the country moves towards a Net Zero future, this is an excellent time for young people to engage with science, technology and engineering.”

Andrew Scott, CEO of Orbital Marine Power added:

“This is a fantastic initiative to support and it’s brilliant to see and support the healthy pipeline of problem solvers Orkney has coming through its schools!”

Prize winners:

  • Pylon STEM Challenge: Rousay Primary & Shapinsay Community School
  • STEM Challenge Winner: Kirkwall Grammar School
  • STEM Challenge Runner-up: Evie Community School
  • STEM Challenge Highest Score: Shapinsay Community School
  • Regional Club of the Year Winner: Stenness Community School 
  • Regional Club of the Year Runner-up: Shapinsay Community School 

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