Engine Shed on Tour students go back to primary school

  • Students from Merchants Academy visited Merchants Primary School to share the skills they developed with Engine Shed on Tour
  • The team toured Hargreaves Lansdown and Future Space, including Bristol Robotics Labs, to learn about potential career pathways
  • Engine Shed on Tour is part of the Diverse Workforce for the Future programme, inspiring young people to follow careers in tech and other creative industries

On Tuesday 10th July, students from Merchants Academy in Withywood, Bristol, visited their feeder school, Merchants Primary School, to share the films they created on their day with Engine Shed on Tour visiting Hargreaves Lansdown and Future Space.

As part of the Engine Shed on Tour programme, Merchants Academy students interviewed staff and toured workspaces, including Bristol Robotics Lab, learning about the companies, their objectives, the different roles on each team, and the potential pathways to join these sectors. Older boomsatsuma students then taught the secondary school pupils to use 360° cameras to create short film about the businesses they visited.

The students presented the films they made to 60 Year 5 and 6 pupils at Merchants Primary School. They shared the skills learned with Engine Shed on Tour to help the youngsters use the same equipment to make another short film on opportunities in the creative sector. The visit offered pupils transitioning into secondary school the chance to learn about innovative, high-tech industries through the use of state of the art equipment, whilst developing beneficial relationships with their older peers.

Commenting about the visit, Sian Hook, Year 9 Head of Learning at Merchants Academy, said:

“Engine Shed on Tour has opened the minds and eyes of our young people to the wealth of careers available to them. It is a unique and fantastic experience!”

Lorraine Fairbanks, Engine Shed’s Partnerships Manager, said:

“It’s wonderful to see the second phase of Engine Shed on Tour begin with the visits to primary schools. We hope it’s a valuable learning opportunity for the secondary school pupils to share their experiences, and that the primary school pupils can carry forward their enthusiasm for their futures in school and eventually at work. We’re grateful to the innovative businesses in the region that have opened their doors to the schools to bring the project to life.”

Lyndsay Davies, Creative Projects Manager at Boomsatsuma, said:

“The second phase of Engine Shed on Tour offers primary students, about to transition into their secondary education, a taster of Bristol’s high tech, digital and creative sectors. The older students get to share and celebrate their rare experiences whilst showing the younger students how to use state of the art equipment. The activity offers students an understanding of the innovative working world their city has to offer.”

By visiting feeder primary schools, Engine Shed on Tour will reach over 1,000 students in the Bristol and Bath city region, inspiring young people around the potential careers available to them in the tech, digital, and low carbon sectors. These industries play a large part in the economic success of the region, so it is important that young people understand the skills needed to access jobs in these sectors.

Since launching in April 2018, Engine Shed on Tour has visited 16 schools and businesses across Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Bath and North East Somerset, and North Somerset. The aim of the project has been to encourage young people from diverse backgrounds to follow careers in industries where their adult counterparts are currently under-represented.

Engine Shed on Tour and the Diverse Workforce for the Future project has been made possible by the reinvestment of £15,000 surplus income raised by companies and individuals using Engine Shed as tenants and members, and for events and room hire. Since its launch in 2013, £113,000 of Engine Shed’s profit has gone back into projects that support the local economy and start-up ecosystem.