Ørsted is delighted to announce that decisions have now been reached on the third annual round of their East Coast “Skills Fund”.
This forms part of the company’s £465,000 East Coast Community Fund 20-year annual commitment and is part of the community engagement programme for Ørsted’s Hornsea One and Race Bank offshore wind farms, which are located off the Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and North Norfolk coast.
The available funding this year is shared between two organisations delivering projects relating to Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) education and training.
The first award goes to 3D Web Technologies Ltd who will deliver twelve STEM skill-focused workshops for year eight pupils. This project aims to give students an engaging, balanced and educationally valuable bigger picture insight into the complexities of offshore wind farm design. In small teams, pupils will be experiencing what it’s like to work on a wind farm development for the day. The teams will create their own ‘company’ with each member having a specific role such as Project Manager, Financial Manager, Technical Adviser or Public Relations (PR) Consultant. They will have to plan and design a wind farm layout considering real-life constraints and obstacles.
Josie Salmon, Education Outreach Coordinator from 3D Web Technologies said “We are delighted to have received this funding from Ørsted East Coast Skills Fund. Last year, we were fortunate enough to also win funding from Ørsted’s Walney Extension Community Fund and deliver similar workshops across the North West which received incredibly positive feedback from both the pupils and teachers. We are therefore really excited to connect with new schools and more young people along the east coast areas to help build their self-confidence and show them the interesting career possibilities that will be available to them in the future.”
The second award will go to the University of Lincoln for a programme to support key organisations seeking to enhance and improve the technical, engineering and problem-solving capabilities of their workforces, in response to a shift from low-skilled manual roles to more technical engineering requirements. The programme will be dynamic in its content, moving away from more traditional teaching methods towards an interactive approach which will see participants working through key industry skills stations, including building a wind-powered car.
Andrew Stevenson the Director of Research & Enterprise said, “At the University of Lincoln we are dedicated to supporting our local community and are delighted to be partnering with Ørsted, a company which shares our passion to empower people and businesses, while taking care of our environment. We believe that continued development and lifelong learning are key to a sustainable and fulfilled workforce, and look forward to building on the confidence and technical skills of employees in the region through this exciting programme.”
A further £15,000 has been awarded to three colleges within the Fund’s coastal area of benefit to be used to help finance local students who are unable to access traditional funding streams for support. The colleges to benefit with grants of £5,000 each are: The Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education, the College of West Anglia and Boston College.
As well as contributing £75,000 a year to the East Coast Skills Fund, Ørsted has also partnered with Teach First to transform the skills landscape in the north. As part of this Ørsted support Teach First on a number of challenging targets to improve the teacher attraction and retention, and pupil progression in Grimsby, Hull and Merseyside.
Imran Nawaz, Stakeholder Advisor, said: “Our community funds are designed to give back to the communities in which we operate, but we’ve ringfenced a part of that specifically to enable organisations to develop and deliver STEM-related education and training. As a predominately engineering-based company, we recognise the importance of developing STEM skills, especially in the areas where we will be operating for many years to come.”
The Fund is being administered by the independent grant-making charity GrantScape. For further information about the Fund and when and how to apply, please visit their website www.grantscape.org.uk or call them on 01908 247634.
For more information on Ørsted’s education initiatives please visit: https://orsted.co.uk/About-us/Corporate-Responsibility/Education