Top award for young engineers

IPSWICH: From theories on how to curb global warming to designs for super speedy go-karts, our future Faradays have a solution to every engineering conundrum.

IPSWICH: From theories on how to curb global warming to designs for super speedy go-karts, our future Faradays have a solution to every engineering conundrum.

Three St Albans sixth formers have all been awarded for their technological nous with scholarships handed out to only a handful of students each year.

Charlotte Mings, Oli Gillespie and Jenny Rowsell joined head of technology Mark Pattinson to check on progress at the site of the school's new sports centre.

Charlotte and Oli, both 16, will receive their Arkwright scholarships and meet their sponsors at the Institution of Engineering and Technology, in London, next week.

Meanwhile 17 year-old Jenny, who received her award last year, is preparing to enter the second stage of support for her future in engineering.

All three had to pass an aptitude exam demonstrating their ability to solve design engineering problems before they could receive the extra financial help to buy books and materials during their A levels.

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Jenny used her scholarship to enrol on a nanotechnology course before the summer holidays, during which she put her engineering skills to use in a variety of other activities which included designing and building a go-kart. She said: “It's time more women got into engineering. It is no longer male dominated and is now an industry judged on ability.”

Charlotte added: “The application process is quite rigorous and you have to be very committed to the subject.

“More valuable than the money are the experiences and connections you gain.”

Mr Pattinson, whose department at St Albans also benefits from a budget contribution, said: “To have three students from the school receive the scholarship is a remarkable achievement and a first for St Albans.

“Now we want to cast our net a bit wider and invite year 11 students from across the area to study here and apply for the Arkwright scholarship.”

Oli also recommended the Arkwright scholarship to any budding young engineers, saying: “I would definitely encourage other people to come here and apply while they're in sixth form. There's no risk involved and it helps when going on to university.”