Building on the overwhelming success of KMF's Young Engineer of the Year 2014, the Staffordshire-based KMF company was quick to announce the challenge facing school students for the 2015 event.
After designing, building and racing an electric car in 2014, students will be challenged to look to the future and develop a 'Gadget' using a 3D printer.
Enthusiasm is already building with 25 schools (up from 18 this year) attending a presentation at KMF to announce the 2015 project, which will get underway officially during September 2014.
Each school will be presented with a Makerbot Z18 3D printer for Year10 students to create a concept gadget that will be scrutinised by an expert panel of judges before they award the prize of KMF Young Engineer of the Year (YEOTY) 2015.
As with the previous YEOTY awards, the KMF challenge will tie in with the school curriculum, with many of the schools running it as a 'live project'.
The challenge will encompass many areas, including engineering principles and business management processes that will help prepare students for that next step into the world of employment.
"The KMF Young Engineer of the Year awards have grown beyond all our expectations, and we are proud of the fact that we are helping to provide what is an excellent opportunity for young people within our geographic area to get hands-on with engineering design and manufacture. We are also encouraged by the support that the project has been given by other local and national businesses across a diverse range of industry groups," says Gareth Higgins, KMF Managing Director.
With the increased number of schools taking part KMF is calling on other businesses to get involved with sponsorship and mentoring of individual schools.
The involvement is a practical way that companies can contribute to the community and also inspire the next generation of engineers.
All sponsors from 2014 saw very positive benefits of being involved, with several already identifying potential new recruits as apprentices.
Any company wishing to receive further information on what is involved can contact the awards coordinator, Suzy Ball on 01782 569060 or email email@example.com
One very keen supporter of the KMF YEOTY is the Channel 5 TV's Gadget Show presenter Jason Bradbury who has presented the winners with their awards for the past two years.
He commented: "Young Engineer of the Year is not only a project that addresses the issues faced by UK Government, such as skills shortage, and youth unemployment, it is also about businesses taking a lead role in ensuring the next generation of the UK's engineering workforce is fit for industry."
"it also gives young people the opportunity to experience the world of work and leaves Staffordshire schools with a legacy that enriches their Design & Technology departments and students' overall learning experience."
A video of Jason Bradbury extolling the virtues of what KMF and its supporters are doing can be seen here: http://youtu.be/2ruK8ibEheI