19 Jun 2015

Intertek engineers visited Hackney schools to inspire children into science, technology, engineering, and maths careers

Intertek, a leading provider of quality solutions worldwide, joined the U.K. education programme Inspire! with a visit to two Hackney primary schools to bring to life Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM) subjects and inspire them to be engineers and scientists of the future.

Intertek’s Dr. Jeremy Opperer, European Technical Operations Director, and Geraldine Cosh, Intertek Senior Safety Engineer, visited Nightingale Primary School and St Paul’s with St Michael’s Primary School in Hackney to bring to life talk these STEM subjects for 5- 7-year olds, but the children were clear that engineers ‘build robots’ when Dr Jeremy asked them what a mechanical engineer does.

These visits were part of Intertek’s calendar of visits to schools across the UK and indeed worldwide in a bid to stimulate interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and encourage more young people into STEM careers.

As representatives for Inspire!’s iDiscover programme, the Intertek experts shared their knowledge with 5- to 7-year-olds, offering information about their jobs in engineering at Intertek as part of events that saw STEM industry professionals—including humanitarian engineers, mechanical engineers, civil engineers, and more—visiting schools around London to talk about their professions in order to help get kids excited about technical professions.

Jeremy and Geraldine explained how their engineering work at Intertek helps keep children and families safe by testing products to ensure proper construction and safety. They discussed how engineering is involved in testing, and asked and answered questions the children had about Intertek, the various fields of engineering, and how engineering work affects the lives of the students directly. They also gave demonstrations, encouraging proper and careful tool usage and helping the children understand how the engineering efforts of taking things apart and putting them back together is used to make products work correctly.

“Intertek Product Intelligence is excited to partner with iDiscover, to show our future generations how interesting and diverse STEM careers can be,” said Gareth Emerson, Director of Intertek Product Intelligence, Europe.

“Children’s interaction with STEM professionals is integral to iDiscover,” said Jonny Boux, Inspire!’s Director. “Working closely with businesses such as Intertek enables us to put children’s science and technology learning into a real world context and brings STEM role models directly into the classroom. We aim to inspire the engineers and scientists of the future!”

Intertek, which grew from a company founded by light bulb inventor Thomas Edison, currently offers more than 35 young people a year - across the UK - the opportunity to join the company through apprenticeships, graduate traineeships, and on-the-job training. With more than a third of companies (39%) having difficulty finding staff for STEM roles, according to a recent CBI report, Intertek believes that engaging with young people is key to reversing this trend.

Intertek employs scientists, engineers, auditors and laboratory technicians with a diverse range of expertise, technical and scientific skills. Intertek scientists and engineers test, inspect and certify everything from the quality of crude oil and high performance car engines to the safety of cancer-busting drugs and children’s toys.

About Intertek

Intertek is a leading quality solutions provider to industries worldwide. From auditing and inspection, to testing, training, advisory, quality assurance and certification, Intertek adds value for its customers by helping improve the quality and safety of their products, assets and processes. With a network of more than 1,000 laboratories and offices and over 38,000 people in more than 100 countries, Intertek supports companies’ success in the global marketplace, by helping customers to meet end users’ expectations for safety, sustainability, performance, integrity and desirability in virtually any market worldwide. Visit www.intertek.com.