Students complete robot design challenge at first UKESF summer school

In response to industry concerns about the falling number of students entering electronics at degree level, the UKESF has established a summer school to help reverse this trend. The five-day course for 16 and 17 year-old school students was run at the University of Bristol.

Yesterday saw the finals of a design and build challenge, where would be scholars competed to create the best-performing two-wheeled balancing robot. The organisers say the course has revealed that "a depth of talent and enthusiasm exists in the next generation of electronics engineers".

"The UKESF summer school targets 16 to17 year old school students who have yet to make their degree choices," said Dr Wendy Daniell, the UKESF manager. "The course highlights advanced electronics technologies; it gives an insight into studying the subject at university. It also illustrates the exciting career choice available in the UK and the strength of the industry. Fuelled with inspiration, we hope the majority that attend the course will select electronics degree programmes come September."

The image below shows 16-17 year-old school students competed to design the best robot as part of the summer school. Students have also participated in innovation sessions, brainstorming ideas for future products. They have also attended lectures from leading UK researchers and met with engineers from leading electronic design companies, including course sponsors ARM, CSR, Dialog Semiconductor and Imagination Technologies.

"We need to attract more of the brightest students to study engineering at universities like Bristol and help prepare them for a vibrant and innovative electronics career," said Professor Nick Lieven, Dean of Engineering at the University of Bristol, which hosted the course. "Seeing the students working together and the ideas they've come up with throughout the course really highlights how much young talent we have in the UK."

Alun Williams
Thursday 14th July 2011

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