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Navy engineers support local science and technology fair

15 March 2018
Navy engineers from HMS Collingwood, HMS Diamond and the RN UTC Team recently attended the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) fair 2018 at CEMAST, Lee-On-Solent.

Navy engineers support local science and technology fairThe team from HMS Collingwood and HMS Diamond, (Lieutenant Carl Marin-Ortega, Petty Officer 'Bash' Bates, Petty Officer Daz Hills and Engineering Technician Stephen Morris) attended the event, both representing the Navy and as STEM Ambassadors.

Their challenge, entitled 'Midnight Minefield' required the groups to get as many team members from one side of the 'minefield' to the other, safely. Each group nominated two team leaders whose responsibility it was to get each blindfolded member across to safety whilst avoiding active 'mines'.

Using all of their patience and developing their leadership skills in the process the team leaders had to instruct the individuals to move in such a way as to safely traverse the minefield, the aim being to receive as many points as possible by getting them across to the other side, 2 points for a success, deducting 1 point for setting off a mine.   

The students, all aged 10-11 years, were cycled through the event, held annually in the CEMAST facility, with a wide variety of local and national business providing activities to interest and inspire the pupils in STEM subjects.

Every team really got into it and we got a good level of competition between teams trying to beat each other over the 3 days

Petty Officer 'Bash' Bates

Bash said of the event, "Usually for STEM events we focus on 'hard skills', different variations on engineering, but for this we decided to use our tried and tested 'soft skills' PLT approach to try and get across the importance of good communication in difficult circumstances. 

“Every team really got into it and we got a good level of competition between teams trying to beat each other over the 3 days. The different approaches to the task were interesting to see and hopefully all those who took part will take away something from the event that will help them later in life.”

The second Navy team were from the UTC Portsmouth and consisted of Chief Petty Officer Andy Hampson and Commander Sophie Shaughnessy and demonstrated pneumatic principles to the students using FESTO STEM Learning Systems. The students were then given a pneumatic circuit to build to mimic the demonstration.

The Education Business Partnership (EDP) STEM Fair, hosted by Fareham College was a joint venture involving nearly 700 young students ranging from 9-11 years from 13 schools from across the local area.

Local affiliated organisations and companies presented a variety of activities which gave young students hands-on experience of the diversity that STEM can offer, both in industry and in every day life.

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