race day


Supporting young people to get into Engineering

May. 24 2019

Bureau Veritas returned to Hartford Primary School in Northwich for a school race day with a difference. 

This is the sixth consecutive year that Bureau Veritas has visited the school to run an engineering challenge, which this time saw around 60 pupils in year five design and build vehicles out of ‘junk’, each powered by stored energy from balloons. Bottles, cardboard and egg boxes were amongst the materials used. The project ran over a six week period whereby each Friday afternoon the students would use their Design and Technology lesson to design, build and test their vehicles ahead of their showcase on the big race day. 

It’s all part of our wider commitment to promote STEM careers and support young people to get into engineering.

Rachel Rawlings, accreditation manager and STEM ambassador for Bureau Veritas, who drives the initiative, said: “This is the sixth time we’ve done this event and I continue to be amazed by the inventiveness of the children. Each year they come up with something different and this year’s participants were almost certainly the most creative yet. It’s a joy to be involved.” 

Working in teams of three to five, the young participants had to follow a strict design brief – including that vehicles must be no longer than 30cm with a wheel diameter of 12cm – before travelling a minimum of three metres. 

Two of the vehicles successfully travelled the full three metres distance and a further four nearly made it. A race off between these six cars yielded the winning team – a white painted plastic bottle.

Feedback from the participants was extremely positive, with support for all aspects including designing the vehicle, choosing a team name, working with others and even getting messy. 

Promoting STEM careers

Rachel adds: “It’s a very engaging and fun day but there’s a serious message too. We’re keen to teach the pupils about real-life engineering projects, whilst also calculating time and distance using relevant maths and physics skills. 

“They were exposed to failure, trial and error and problem solving, all in a fun environment while touching on the core processes of engineering like testing, refining and improving.

“We’re extremely proud to be able to work with young people on STEM projects in this way and to help show them that a career in engineering is exciting, rewarding and creative.”

Want to know more?

To find out more about our people development programme, or to view current vacancies at Bureau Veritas, visit our careers website.