UTC students build bridges with help from business

UTC Swindon students

Students at UTC Swindon have been putting their civil engineering skills to the test with a bridge-building project set by a national construction firm. The Year 10 students worked in teams, supported by staff from HOCHTIEF (UK) Construction, to build a bridge which could support as much weight as possible.

The aim of the project was to introduce students to careers in civil engineering and develop skills of teamwork and innovation. Keith Broughton, Director of HOCHTIEF (UK) Construction Ltd, said:

It is our hope that UTC Swindon students gained some knowledge and a lot of enjoyment from the bridge building day, and that in turn this will inspire some of the students to consider civil engineering in the future. HOCHTIEF are committed to supporting the local education community, and look forward to developing further ways of fostering the delivery of STEM subjects.

Students first had to draw their truss designs accurately and plan their construction using materials provided, before working together to build their bridges. They were then tested three days later to see which bridge supported the heaviest weight.

Joanne Harper, UTC Swindon Executive Principal, commented:

We are grateful to HOCHTIEF for coming to run this fantastic activity with our Year 10 students. Experiences like this are highly valuable for them as they are exposed to the wide range of opportunities available to them in the future if they consider a career in engineering.

UTC Swindon is a school for 14-19 year olds which specialises in engineering, taught alongside the national curriculum. Their next open event for students interested in joining in September is on Saturday 24 June, 10am-2pm; please register to attend online at www.utcswindon.co.uk/events.

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