Focusing on how engineers and farmers collaborate to feed the nation, the NFU Education team has teamed up with the University of Manchester’s SEERIH (Science and Engineering Education Research and Innovation Hub) to create this inspiring new challenge.
The aim in the first year is to link 80 farmers and 80 engineers with at least 80 schools in England and Wales. The students will be working on a challenge linked to British agricultural engineering and will be themed dependant on their age:
Ages 7-9: Arable
Ages 9-11: Dairy
Ages 11-14: Sustainability
How to get involved
We already have over 80 schools subscribed and are recruiting for farmers and those working in the agricultural industry who can commit to:
“This is a key time in a student’s educational journey where they build an understanding of key concepts. If we fail to engage them at this point, they will often build misconceptions or simply not be aware of the sector at all.”
NFU chief education manager Josh Payne
- Attending an online training session/explainer on 16 November 2022 (maximum 2 hours). It will also be available to watch back later if you are not able to join us live.
- Visiting a school in person in either London, Birmingham, or Manchester (expenses paid) OR a virtual visit with a school on Teams or Zoom. These visits will take place in January – March 2023.
- Follow up with the school later in the term either via Zoom/Teams or via email/letter.
A key time in a child’s educational journey
NFU chief education manager Josh Payne said: “For young people to choose to even consider a career in agriculture, we as an industry need to engage them earlier and do our very best to provide them with experiences that give them a positive view of what we do.
“This is a key time in a student’s educational journey where they build an understanding of key concepts. If we fail to engage them at this point, they will often build misconceptions or simply not be aware of the sector at all.
“I really believe in the methodology of working with this age group and the NFU has backed this with significant investment towards SEERIH’s role in the project.”
Some questions answered
Do I need to follow a script or run the challenge with the children?
In short, no. The challenge will be delivered by teachers with support from the University of Manchester. What we need you to do is be an inspiring role model for the students. How does what you do change the world? What is it like to be a farmer? What would happen if there wasn’t someone like you?
Do I need to know about engineering?
No. We only require you to talk about farming and your day-to-day role on farm. No engineering experience or expertise is required.
I don’t live or work near the in-person visit locations – should I still get involved?
Yes! Visits can be conducted virtually, and we’ll be rolling out the project to all NFU regions in England and Wales in year two of the project. It can sometimes be hard to see the immediate value in connecting further afield, however this is a chance to introduce your specialism to a group of students who have never encountered it before.
Want to get involved?