The Schools: Wrekin College and Colton Hills Community School

Wrekin College from Shropshire and Colton Hills Community School from Wolverhampton joined together to compete at a special enterprise challenge event at Perkins Engines, Stafford. It was their first experience of an Enabling Enterprise trip and both schools were keen find out more about Perkins Engines and their challenge for the day.

The Business: Perkins Engines, Stafford

With a history stretching back more than 80 years, Perkins Engines Co Ltd. is one of the world’s leading providers of diesel and gas engines. Perkins was established in Peterborough in 1932 and is now subsidiary of Caterpillar. Perkins engines can found all over the world, for example providing the emergency power system for the Shard as well many public buildings, including hospitals and places safety and quality as their number one priorities.

The Challenge: Imaginative Inventors

Having arrived at Perkins’ cutting edge engine production facility, students were introduced to the Enterprise Skills and reflected on the times they have shown Being Creative and Working in a Team to date. Head of Apprenticeships, Mark commented how important the eight Enterprise Skills are in his recruitment process before leading an inspiring tour to show students the scale, innovation and technology involved in modern manufacturing. Having gained a sense of what goes on at Perkins engines, students were inspired by what they’d seen on the tour and were set the challenge of inventing a gadget or piece of technology which would make life easier for Perkins employees. To succeed, students needed to stretch their Problem Solving, and Sharing Ideas skills.

The Results:

Students gained in confidence throughout the day, working effectively in their teams, making the most of every available moment! All teams impressed their teachers and judges alike with the quality of their creative ideas and passion in presenting. It was agreed, all of the gadget ideas met the brief and would indeed support Perkin’s employees to maintain their high standards of work and ensure all were safe whilst doing so.

What they said:

  • “It’s been great to see them all working together and see them change over the course of the day. ” – Teacher, Wrekin College
  • “This is the second time I have volunteered with Enabling Enterprise and I will definitely do it again…it is amazing to see that ‘spark’ be ignited in the students – to see them suddenly think, ‘I can do this’ and be prepared to have a go.” – Volunteer, Perkins Engines
  • “Our team got better at Listening and Sharing Ideas as the day went on. At the start, we didn’t really talk much or communicate well with each other but by the end we were coming up with very good ideas and sharing them well in our team meetings.” – Student, Colton Hills Community School
  • “I’ve never thought about engineering before – but this is exciting. I can see myself working here.” – Student, Colton Hills Community School

Thanks to Perkins Engines for such a great trip, and to Year 8 from Wrekin College and Colton Hills Community School for coming along.

Enabling Enterprise are working in partnership with schools and businesses to support students to build enterprise skills and aspirations. Find out more by contacting us or visiting enablingenterprise.org

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