As a result of our success in the Talent 2030 Engineering Competition for Girls, we were awarded a trip to the Rolls-Royce heritage site in Derby along with other successful entries from multiple age groups.
The trip started with a talk about the company and its accomplishments such as having the most fuel-efficient and low carbon emission jet engines in the business. This was followed by interesting talks about the many opportunities that Rolls-Royce offers to young people from GCSE level to university apprenticeships.
After the talks, we had a chance to have individual discussions with teams of people from different sectors of the company from the fast response repair team to the future developments team. This gave us the opportunity to find out about the many areas within the company, some which had a lot of hands-on engineering work and some which managed the finances of the material supply.
Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects of the day was presenting our project report on how to reduce the amount of black plastic going into landfill to some of the engineers, and also listening to another of the competition winners present her project. She had built and programmed a robot to travel along beaches and collect rubbish, sorting it into bins according to the material. It was fascinating to see the level of skill and commitment she had put into her project, having worked on it for years.
After lunch we had a fun robotics activity where we programmed a robotic arm to carry out simple activities such as moving a tennis ball from one place to another, and moving a paintbrush. This was more challenging than it first appeared as we had to think of controlling every movable aspect of the robot and give it precise instructions as it cannot think to fill in the gaps as humans can.
The day finished with a tour around the heritage site, looking at jet engines such as one of the two jet engines to cross the Atlantic Ocean, and the engines which powered Spitfires during the war.
Overall the day was very interesting and informative, as none of us knew about the opportunities that Rolls-Royce and many other companies offer to students going into university, or that there were so many roles within the company which were not necessarily to do with hands-on engineering.
Genevieve Baller, Year 13 IB Physics Student