Heald partners with Hornsea School & Language College to deliver STEM Challenge

To enhance the understanding of and the career opportunities available within the manufacturing sector, we recently partnered with Hornsea School & Language College (HSLC) to deliver a STEM skills development challenge.

For the challenge, Heald developed a six-week-long STEM challenge in which we briefed students on a “real world” project scenario to identify which of Heald’s products would be best used for an installation. 

We provided detail on a range of our products and insights into HVM (Hostile Vehicle Mitigation), and a fictional location that required perimeter protection. From this, the students did their research and put together a presentation on which products they would use and why.

What was the outline of the challenge?

The challenge was to secure a “real-life” location with a number of protective barriers, bollards or road blockers from the Heald product range. However, consideration was needed by the students as they were given specific site constraints and any underground utilities or obstructions. They also had to look at the operational requirements for each location and from this, match the most suitable product. 

How did the challenge go?

The challenge was a great success with all students enjoying taking part. The winners of the challenge were George, Conal and Harvey, three students who made an exceptional attempt and developed a PowerPoint with a detailed plan utilising Heald branding on the mitigation products they would use for several locations. 

They chose five locations, looking into both the ground and satellite view of all and justifying their product choices. For the five locations, they chose the Matador 4 HT3 Bollard, Manual Matador HT2, Mantis 80 Static Array, Mantis 64 Static Bollards and Matador 6 HT3 Bollard. They decided on these products based on the cost, depth and width of each product. 

The winning team were presented with a trophy and cash prize, with two runner-up teams also benefiting from a cash prize too. 

Matthew Knapton – STEM pathway lead HSLC, comments on the challenge: “The Heald STEM Challenge was a fantastic way for students to engage with a local STEM company in a unique and exciting way.

Working closely with Heald was a great chance to promote STEM careers available to students from HSLC. It helped open the student's eyes to what occupations are available right on their doorstep and encouraged them to find out more about these opportunities. 

The project itself was designed to challenge students in a way they would not be used to working in the classroom. Throughout the project, students developed their teamwork, problem-solving and organisation skills to design an effective solution to the problem posed. The biggest challenge to the students was the open-ended nature of the project. This is an unusual way of working for the students and forced them to be innovative with their solutions. 

On a number of occasions, teams were stuck or did not know what to do but came up with their own answer to the problem. It was great to see students work successfully together in ways much more common in industry than in school. “

Heald Managing Director, Debbie Heald MBE added: “We are extremely proud of our longstanding relationship with Hornsea School and Language College. Providing young people with real-life insights behind the scenes of a manufacturing operation is vital to bringing more talent into the industry.

The quality of presentations from all students who took part in the STEM challenge was exceptional. We look forward to continuing to work with HLSC and their students.”


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