The Hinkley Point C Inspire Education Programme has carried out over 1,000 activities generating 150,000 student interactions, in over 400 education institutions, since it launched in 2011.
The innovative program, delivered in schools across the south-west, is helping to address national skills shortage whilst preparing young people for the wealth of opportunities at Hinkley Point C. With A 10-year construction period and a 60-year operating life expectancy, many of our future Hinkley Point C employees will be in the classrooms of today. The Inspire Programme is helping them to uncover this rare opportunity and set them up with the skills they need.
Working closely with the Department for Education, local authorities, schools and colleges, the programme has steadily expanded over the last seven years. Through a range of free activities, workshops, assemblies, a residential experience and events, Somerset youngsters are gaining first-hand experience of engineering, an appreciation of the nuclear industry, and the challenges and opportunities of a low-carbon energy mix in the future.
Tom Thayer, EDF Energy Education and Skills Manager, said “Whilst our education aims are long-term, recent independent research into the Inspire Programme is showing that it’s really making a difference. 55% of students surveyed said they learnt about careers they didn’t know about before, 74% recommend inspire events to their peers and 60% have a better idea of what employers are interested in.”
“Getting the chance to work with EDF Energy not only adds an extra perspective to the learning experience, but, crucially, opens doors towards careers that a student didn’t previously know existed. It’s giving them more ideas and more choices.”
CEO of Bridgwater College Trust, Peter Elliott, supported the programme, “The HPC Inspire team delivers industry-leading school engagement across the region to motivate young people, especially in STEM subjects. The programme builds an innovative bridge from education into the world of work - supporting local careers advice and guidance. Highlighting the profile of apprenticeship options, the programme supports the region’s strategy for increasing productivity and social mobility, particularly in West Somerset”
Dr Julie Young, Post-16 Adviser, Somerset County Council, said “HPC’s education programme delivers a wide range of workshops, assemblies and other innovative activities from across Somerset and beyond. The team are on hand to bring science technology engineering and maths to life and feeds directly into the Young HPC programme, giving young people access to a range of resources that will help them take steps towards their dream career and access the many apprenticeship opportunities available at HPC.”