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NIA's Tigui helps to open new STEM learning facility at Network Rail

Posted on: 18/02/2020

Stemlab TiguiPupils from Northampton International Academy have helped to official unveil a new dedicated STEM learning facility at Network Rail.

The aim of the STEM lab is to inspire the next generation to pursue careers in the science, technology, engineering and maths sectors and help close skills gaps in vital areas across Britain.

Network Rail’s chief executive Andrew Haines was joined by Stephen Metcalfe MP and NIA pupil Tigui to cut the ribbon at the new facility, in Milton Keynes.

Andrew Haines, chief executive of Network Rail, said: “There is an estimated shortfall of as many as 59,000 engineers coming into the workforce via apprenticeships and higher education. Providing this kind of meaningful engagement with young people to address the issue is absolutely vital for the future of our railway and indeed for Britain. 

“The opening of this new facility is a really exciting step, and we are keen to roll the initiative out further across the country as we try to inspire young people and improve the numbers and diversity of students pursuing careers in STEM fields.”

The lab is a dedicated space where schoolchildren and community groups will be invited to take part in a range of STEM-based activities, including a virtual reality cube, which provides an immersive 3D experience of travelling in a train cab, moving between traditional to digital technologies.

The new facility will be used not only to improve engagement with local communities, universities and schools within the Milton Keynes area and beyond, but also to train Network Rail staff on sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm for STEM subjects as part of the company’s STEM ambassador programme.

NIA pupils were among the first to experience the new facility when it opened on Friday (February 14th). 

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