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Tracking the stats: How our STEM activity stacks up

Published 1 May 2024

ORE Catapult’s Marketing Manager, Tom Chaplin, explores how our team of STEM volunteers have ensured the company’s outreach activities have bounced back stronger than ever following COVID. 

As a leading player in the UK offshore wind industry, promoting science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is key to our core values. It ensures that the next generation of STEM specialists see renewables as the number one place for them to fulfil their careers over the coming decades. 

Across all four corners of the UK, from Blyth to Pembroke Dock and Cornwall to Aberdeen, an army of volunteers deliver our STEM engagement programme with no less than 35 Catapult colleagues registered as STEM Ambassadors, equating to more than 10% of our workforce. 

Last year, the team spent over 600 hours engaging with more than 16,000 school pupils and their teachers, taking part in 26 careers events and hosting 90 lectures, workshops and site visits! 

Local, regional and national support 

Our colleagues actively promote diversity in STEM by creating or supporting local and regional events and activities that drive engagement from underrepresented groups in engineering. We’ve also supported national initiatives, such as Green Careers Week, National Apprenticeship Week and the First Lego League. 

Since 2016, ORE Catapult has invested more than £250,000 in supporting educational activities and facilities at Levenmouth Academy, Fife, including the sponsorship of full-ti​​me STEM coordinator and support for associated programmes. The school is located within one mile of the Catapult’s 7MW Levenmouth Demonstration Turbine, the world’s most advanced, open-access offshore wind turbine dedicated to research and development (R&D).  

Generation Net Zero 

Most recently, we partnered with Engineering UTC Northern Lincolnshire in 2022 to create the Generation Net Zero education and training facility, where primary school children and their teachers can learn about renewable energy, the environment and engineering.  

Last year, the facility delivered workshops to over 500 local school children. It is run from a suite of dedicated rooms at the college’s Scunthorpe campus with equipment and resources bought with funding from ORE Catapult. The facility was designed with suggestions and feedback from primary school teachers and children. 

Apprenticeships, internships and graduates 

The opportunities created via our STEM outreach don’t just concern school children though. Since the beginning of 2020, the Catapult is proud to have provided a considerable number of pathways into the renewables industry for secondary school learners and leavers, as well as college and university graduates via a total of 64 internships, 12 apprenticeships, 13 graduate positions and 14 Kickstart scheme jobs. We’ve also supported no less than 41 PhD opportunities in these last few years. 

As the renewables industry continues to lead the way on net zero, so too will ORE Catapult in inspiring the next generation of engineers, scientists, technicians and technologists to choose the sector and as a result drive real, worldwide change. 

To celebrate the commitment and achievements of all our colleagues who support the Catapult’s STEM activity so wholeheartedly, we’ve produced a film which you can watch by clicking here.

To talk to us about how we can potentially support your school or project, please feel free to get in touch with Tom Chaplin.