The Role of an Engineer
Chris Norths STEM Ambassadors’ Blog
Event Date: 05/10/2012
I responded to a STEMNET email requesting a STEM Ambassador to attend Queensmead School in West London to describe “The Role of an Engineer”. As this essentially meant talk about yourself and your job (and how it related to STEM subjects) I thought this was a good first event for me to take part in.
The brief stated that the students are studying engineering A-level and it would benefit them by speaking to an Engineer to gain an insight into their role. It also said that they have been covering subjects such as engineering activities, the application of technology in engineering, legislation and standards in engineering.
I was able to describe some of the works I have been involved in, showing photos of different phases of projects from conception to completion. I also took along a number of technical drawings, specifications and Methods Statements to demonstrate an engineers’ work behind the final product.
I soon found what areas the students were interested in and tried to focus on those. For my works this was the large tunnel boring machine which they did give me some very intelligent questions on. I also had a number of short videos I was going to use to break up me standing and lecturing at them but these didn’t work on the school computers. Luckily I planned for this and used photos and my own descriptions in its place. I also took a lot of hand outs and papers in the event the projector didn’t work.
The event was a 2 hours lesson. I talked for 1h 15mins which I felt was just enough as one of the students looked like they’d have enough for the final 10mins.
The Engineering A-level students of Queenmead School were enthusiastic and very intelligent and I wouldn’t hesitate to help them again. Both the teachers and the students were very welcoming! I asked for some feedback for the teacher at the end and she told me that it was very interesting and helped to students understand how STEM subjects related to the real world.