Category Archives: Case Study

Keeping STEM engagement going during lockdown

What made you decide to take part in Tomorrow’s Engineers Zone?

As a STEM Ambassador, I’m passionate about working with young people. Lockdown restrictions meant it wasn’t possible to attend outreach events, so I was keen to find another way to keep the momentum going. Tomorrow’s Engineers Zone provided the perfect opportunity to continue speaking to students about STEM online and from the safety of our homes.

How did you find fitting in the activity around your work routine?

Working from home has given me a fair amount of flexibility in how I arrange my work hours. If I have a chat session, I can usually cut my lunch break short or add that time on to the end of the day. I’ve really enjoyed my time talking to students and so have been more than happy to fit it into my work routine.


It’s a brilliant feeling knowing that you’re opening students’ minds

What did you think about chatting to the students?

Having these open conversations with students is a great way for them to fire away any questions that they might have and get an instant response. The curiosity and enthusiasm students showed was brilliant to see.

There were such a wide variety of questions asked to all the multi-disciplinary engineers – topics ranging from school/university experiences, our careers, our opinions on topics like achieving net carbon zero, and many more!

How did you talk about careers in engineering?

I shared my own path to becoming a Structural Engineer from doing my A-Levels, a Master of Engineering (MEng) degree and then to a Graduate Scheme. However, I mentioned this isn’t the only way into the role and there’s also an apprenticeship route.

I also emphasised the importance of researching and learning more about careers that interest you, and so commended students on joining this platform to do just that.

What would you say to other engineers thinking about taking part?

I would strongly encourage other engineers to take part in the future. It’s a brilliant feeling knowing that you’re opening students’ minds to career possibilities that they may never have considered was for them.

It’s also a great way to showcase role models that they might not have access to, in particular female engineers and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic engineers. For example, there was an International Women in Engineering Day event where the live chats were full of only female engineers which was awesome to see.

Overall, taking part in I’m an Engineer has definitely been a rewarding experience, the students’ curiosity and enthusiasm has been contagious!

To take part in a future I’m an Engineer event, apply now at Contact for more information.

Posted on September 2, 2020 in Case Study | Comments Off on Keeping STEM engagement going during lockdown

Personal development and confidence communicating


Giuseppe took part in the Artificial Intelligence Zone, talking to students about his role as a software engineer at Buhler Sortex and his PhD. He had participated in some public dissemination activities while working in a previous job as a researcher, but didn’t expect how much the I’m an Engineer experience would benefit him.


An excellent opportunity to showcase your knowledge and to learn to do it clearly, in a persuasive and engaging way.

The art of communication
“Participating taught me to explain technical topics in an amusing way, without using a specialist glossary. It was an excellent opportunity for training in the art of communication.”

Giuseppe says the benefits of doing public outreach extend beyond academia. “Whether you work as a consultant, or you’re writing a book, or you are simply an employee, this competition is effectively an opportunity to showcase your knowledge and to learn to do it very clearly, in a persuasive and engaging way.”

Improved confidence in communicating
Answering students’ questions and working out the best way to communicate has helped Giuseppe professionally: “If you’re able to explain to a teenager how a software architecture is meant to interact in a bigger system, it is very likely that you will be able to persuade the project manager, the marketing department or a customer you are working with that your opinion is right.”

The future of engineering
Over the two weeks Giuseppe spoke to hundreds of school students and says he “got the feeling that my words were given primary importance by students… the decisions of future professionals could be affected by what I said; this gave me great satisfaction.”

To take part in a future I’m an Engineer event, apply now at, or contact for more information.

Posted on June 25, 2019 in Case Study, Engineer Quotes, News | Comments Off on Personal development and confidence communicating

Long lasting benefits for employees and employers


Before taking part in I’m an Engineer, Emma Ryan felt the engagement events she was involved in weren’t reaching those who would benefit most. “Talking to girls about engineering is a big push for what I do,” she says, “but we were going to speak to women at university who know they’re doing engineering… I think it’s more important to go back to primary school.”

In I’m an Engineer, Emma was able to directly reach this audience. Winning the zone then gave her £500 towards her own engagement activities, which she used to leverage support from her employer.


The workshop is now becoming a permanent part of our outreach activities.

“Lockheed paid for half of the 3D printer, which is used to run workshops in primary schools,” says Emma, “and the workshop is now becoming a permanent part of our outreach activities.”

Emma plans to continue developing the workshop and is bringing her colleagues with her on school visits. ‘I’ve done five local schools and other teachers are requesting it. Lockheed are continuing to support and pay people to come and give me a hand. I’m still seeing what works and what doesn’t, but I’ve got feedback saying it’s good to see engineers are normal people, which is always a good message to spread!”

Emma has also gained on a personal and a professional level as a result of taking part. “My public profile was heightened from doing I’m an Engineer, and then the university invited me to do Bright Club and perform on BBC radio,” she says. “It’s also part of my doctoral portfolio, and the feedback I’ve had from my school visits will be part of my application to be a chartered engineer.

To take part in a future I’m an Engineer event, apply now at, or contact for more information.

Posted on June 17, 2019 in Case Study, News | Comments Off on Long lasting benefits for employees and employers

Showing students the relevance of their learning

“Doing something engaging like this creates a more well-rounded education and my students have now seen real-life applications of curriculum content.” — Lucy, Maths Teacher at Cornelius Vermuyden School, Canvey Island


Only a small proportion of students at Cornelius Vermuyden School aspire to go to university or move out of the local area, and many don’t see the point in what they study in school. Lucy tells us how their involvement in I’m an Engineer helped them see the importance of maths and broaden their horizons.

Why apply for I’m an Engineer

Many of Lucy’s students don’t see the relevance of maths, and engaging and motivating them can be challenging: “Some have very low aspirations, so convincing them they need a pass in maths for their future — let alone showing them how the maths content relates to their lives — can be difficult.”

Lucy wanted to give her students an awareness of careers and what engineers actually do to open their minds. “I really wanted to broaden horizons from their tunnel vision and, often insular, island mentality.”

What did students do?

Lucy introduced her class to the I’m an Engineer website and set them homework to log in, research the engineers and come up with some questions they could ask. After some preparation, they took part in an online live chat with engineers, having a two-way conversation in real time. Following their live chat lesson, Lucy kept students engaged throughout the two-weeks of I’m an Engineer by looking at the site for a few minutes at the end of their lessons.

Showing students the relevance of curriculum content

Through I’m an Engineer, Lucy gained real, tangible examples to show her students the application of the maths they are learning. These examples and links with the engineers’ projects helped students appreciate the relevance and value of maths. “When teaching about drawing or using compasses, I can now say ‘that engineer had to design the robotic hand before they made it and getting the proportions correct would have been very important.’ This is helpful in engaging students in the maths we learn.”

Raising aspirations and broadening horizons

Lucy was surprised at how much the students engaged with each engineer’s area of work and how this fed into their own career plans. “They were really interested in the different projects the engineers were working on — they started to think about what they wanted to do in the future and wanted to find out more.”

Lucy’s students now have a much broader understanding of what engineers do. “At the start, lots of them thought engineers were people who fixed lifts or cars, but they’ve broadened their views about what engineering jobs can involve. Many students are now interested in what they could do or build as an engineer.”

To show your students the relevance of their learning through I’m a Scientist and I’m an Engineer activities, register your interest at and, or contact for more information.

Already registered? Don’t forget to apply for the next event – we email registered teachers when applications open (about 2 months before the event starts).

Posted on July 13, 2018 in Case Study, News | Comments Off on Showing students the relevance of their learning