Excellence was certainly on exhibition at Hartlepool College of Further Education on Wednesday 4th May as students from the School of Engineering showcased the culmination of their year-long projects. Problem-solving, design understanding and management skills are key to the success of any engineering project, these being developed across all our programmes-of-study, but it was our Level 3 and Level 4 learners who were in the spotlight on this occasion at our Project Presentation Day.
John Strickland, Head of Engineering, said “It’s nice to get everyone back in the building attending the Project Presentation Day after twice being postponed due to Covid. As the Home of Engineering, the event is an important part of the School of Engineering’s calendar and the students have certainly shown their excellence here today. Creating future engineers with the right knowledge, skills, behaviours and confidence is in our DNA and has been since 1849.”
The event, which has been held annually at the College for over fifteen years, sees students pitch their designs, artifacts, procedures, and solutions to engineering problems. Over 100 presentations were on show in the College Atrium, where learners, staff, employers and other invited guests could learn about each project and quiz the exhibitors on the finer points of their ideas. As an added incentive, a number of awards were on offer for the best concepts, voted for by our visitors.
Many of the projects aim to solve problems identified to apprentices from their employers, and the input of our industrial partners is key to the event’s success. Peter Daley, PED Engineer with NSK Bearings said “Firstly, from personal experience albeit a long time ago, I know how nerve-wracking this kind of event can be. My opinion was that the students were well prepared for the Project Presentation Day, interacted well with the visitors, and spoke with confidence. When discussing their projects, all the students were professional and very engaging. Well done to all involved, and long may it continue!”
Andrew Smith, Senior Electrical Engineer with Liberty Steel, reiterated “Project Presentation Day’s energy is captivating. Every student I engaged with had a deep technical understanding of their project which demonstrates the hard work and commitment they have invested. The presentation of the students’ projects was professional and to a high standard; I particularly like the presentation boards which provide an overview of the project and supports their practical demonstrations. I have often taken inspiration from their ideas and try to apply them to technical issues we have on our site. It’s great for me to meet the young engineers of the future - Project Presentation Day gives them a platform to present their work to peers and those in industry. I take motivation from their enthusiasm.”
At the end of the demanding day, with the votes tallied, our winners were announced:
The 'Level 3 Project Merit Awards' were collected by Bobby Robinson of Nifco UK Ltd, who had developed a system to prevent the packing of rejected manufactured parts; and Stephen Smailes of TMD Friction, who had developed an Orange Cell Powder Transfer system for the brake-pad manufacturer.
The 'HNC Project Merit Award' winners were Olivia McLurg of Caterpillar for her Axle Differential Lifter and Richard Laybourn of Liberty Steel for his redesign and refit of a vital on-site control system.
But there was a runaway winner on the day – Jack Fallow of TMD Friction, whose project was a fully-functional programmable logic controller test rig, used to help train maintenance technicians at the company. Jack’s transformation into a mature, self-confident young apprentice coupled with his dedication to his work not only won him the 'Engineers of Tomorrow' Award (voted on exclusively by fellow students), but also the coveted 2022 Project of the Year Award.
Mark Elliott, Deputy Head of Engineering and organiser of the 'Project Presentation Day', said “We see this as our flagship event to showcase the excellent work our students produce, combining the theoretical knowledge and practical skills used in their apprenticeships and courses. The level of knowledge was exceptional when questioned by staff, students and employers. We are immensely proud of our students and we are already looking forward to next year’s event!
View our dedicated Photo Gallary of the day here >> https://bit.ly/PPDay2022Gal