Highfield School Completes Skills Gap Programme

Published Thursday 07 May 2015

Students from Highfields School, Wolverhampton recently presented the results of their Skills Gap project at Thomas Dudley in the West Midlands who worked with the school in the programme.

With support from the business and Skills Gap coach, the school’s D&T teachers focused on improving their skills in using the ‘SOLIDWORKS’ CAD system.  They devised and delivered a project to Year 8 students using a brief, related to Thomas Dudley’s business, to create a cistern lever handle which young children could easily use.

After an initial visit and around nine weeks’ work in school, four groups of students completed their models which they presented to a team of ‘judges’ from Thomas Dudley. All designs were well received with the ‘hungry caterpillar’ prototype receiving top marks

“I was very impressed with the attitude, enthusiasm and standard of work produced by the students,” said Chris Corbett, Principal Design Engineer at Thomas Dudley.

Student groups were unanimous in their appreciation of the opportunity to undertake the project and work with industry.  One student commented: “I enjoyed creating the product and watching it come to life in the 3D printer. It was as if I was working professionally for a real company and presenting it gave us a more enjoyable experience”

The school has written their own report on the project, entitled ‘Bridging the Gap between Education and Industry’ which can be seen here.  

The teaching resources, created through the project, entitled ‘3D modelling using SOLIDWORKS’, will be available on the Skills Gap website next month. 

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