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Bring your children to work – we’ll STEMulate their careers!

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If you’re an engineer, you have the ability to influence your child’s career choice, and with support from your work colleagues, your impact on future engineers has the potential to sky rocket.

2 May 2017

Parents are the first and most important role models for their children.

With our commitment to support the growth of the engineering industry, we make efforts to stimulate the interests of the next generation of engineers and designers.

In April, as part of Bring your daughters to work week, employees at CH2M’s UK offices joined forces with WISE in organising three successful events open to all genders, despite the event’s title.

The first event took place April 5 when Laura Birtwell, supported by the UK chapter of the Women’s Network and many of her fellow colleagues, hosted 17 children. Kids toured our office In London and listened to Cathy Lemon and Marshall McFadyen speak about aviation.

What child wouldn’t be delighted with a paper airplane competition, designing an airport and getting to navigate a 3D airport simulation? Things got even better when they got to build a bridge from drinking straws and sticky tape, and test load the bridges with chocolate bars. Paul McKay and Eric Ting became the “sweet masters” of engineering!

The fun education continued as Prunella Khalawan helped the children understand the wider impacts of engineering through designing a poster highlighting the ecological benefits of the Thames Tideway Tunnel. Roohi Nayak closed the day by explaining different engineering careers and paths, and then our little guests got to shadow their parents at their desks.

Bruce Slattery and Chris Bushell who jointly ran the second event in Bristol, helped children realize the wide range of technical and project management disciplines present among the office team. Participants designed buildings and a rollercoaster using sketch up and VISSIM Microsimulation coding. They also attended an internal progress meeting on our exciting new M4 J18a link road major scheme, following the client’s acceptance of initial options developed during the past 6 months.

The children were all delighted with the day and valued the opportunity to see technology being used in real life applications as well as state of the art graphical techniques for complex design projects.

The third event at the Lower Thames Crossing office, organised by Louise Stanley, was also a success. The Beaufort House building hosted 13 children who were given a variety of engineering-related tasks with the intention of increasing awareness and interest in the engineering profession.

Inspiring the next generation of engineers is a wonderful thing. Participants’ enthusiasm and their appreciation for what we do make us believe these events really do help children understand and gain an interest in engineering and may help them formulate their career paths.

“It was very inspirational and if you wanted to impress a young girl about engineering – you did it”, said one parent.

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