Thank you Kent for a brilliant TeenTech day!
It’s hard to sum up the TeenTech experience but it leaves everyone elated but exhausted. Teenagers came from all over Kent – some travelling for over two hours, determined to make the most of the opportunity to meet more engineers and scientists in a day than most meet in a lifetime.
They arrived with stereotypical images of scientists as mad male loners who work in labs and engineers as people who build bridges and mend washing machines. Students were asked to quickly draw their impressions. Wild hair, glasses and white coats were very much in evidence. Out of 300 students, just 20 drew women.
Unsurprisingly, only 43% were fairly or very interested in becoming an engineer. But five hours later it was a different story. Using voting buttons the students registered their surge of interest with 80% now believing they might find a future there for themselves.
The people who made the difference were 140 engineers and scientists armed with the very latest technology. They work hard to devise clever, engaging stands conveying the essence of their working life. So engaging, before TeenTech opens you see contributors sneaking round trying out the activities themselves. I watched a pale faced member of the BBC Blue Room peel herself off the virtual skeleton bob, saying “Awesome, where’s the nearest run?”
@documentally, one of the UK’s most prolific tech bloggers came along, wasting no time trying his luck on the skeleton bob. He was, by his own admission, rubbish, spending most of the run slamming into trees. Anyway he recovered enough to post his experience of the event. Like all of us he was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm and absorption of the young people,
The official pictures and videos of the day will be up here shortly and a team of judges are narrowing down over a thousand post it notes stuck onto our Fountain of Ideas for 2050. Look out for the shortlist and cast your vote. In the meantime, if you spot any scientists or engineers looking as if they haven’t slept for weeks, then they were probably at TeenTech Kent 🙂
Let’s hear it for the people who gave their time and their tech to make the event so very special. Apps For Good, Agant, BAE Systems, BBC Blue Room, BCS, BT, Cummins, Denne, DTSL,Engineering in Motion, Google, IoD, IET, JVC, Kenwood, New World Telecom, NOISE, Pyuda, RoboChallenge, Samsung, Siemens, Smallpiece Trust, Thin_k, Treloar,University of Kent, University of Leicester and Zenos