Sunderland College event aims to plant seeds of STEM

Ellen Thinnesen
Ellen Thinnesen
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The worlds of business and education come together tomorrow to encourage more young people to pursue a career in industries involving STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects.

The Big STEM Event, organised by Sunderland College, will see representatives from businesses such as Proctor and Gamble; Leighton Group; Rolls Royce; and gaming company NextGen come together with Sunderland, Teesside, Northumbria and Newcastle universities, to highlight the range of roles available in industry.

The event, at the college's Bede Campus, is part of a major push by business and academia to ensure the region continues to produce the skills needed to sustain the growth of STEM industries.

College principal and chief executive Ellen Thinnesen said the event was an example of how business and education were working together to tackle the region's skills gaps.

“The North East is a hub for STEM related industries, but this position relies on having skilled, talented students and apprentices equipped with the relevant skills and knowledge.," she said.

“If the region is to continue to grow its reputation and realise its potential in this field, it is critical that education – which is best placed to reach our young people – and business, who will ultimately provide the employment opportunities to these people in the future, work in unison. We must all make a strong and compelling case for STEM and the career pathways available, and this event is designed to do just that.”

The event, which will run from 4pm to 6.30pm, is open to students of all ages, but is expected to appeal particularly to those in their final year of school, keen to learn more about their career options.

Curriculum leader Marianne Hill said: “STEM careers are so varied – STEM covers a whole spectrum of industries from gaming, to pharmaceuticals, and manufacturing to medical innovation, but we are keen to show that these are subjects that set you up for life and that offer rewarding, stimulating careers for both men and women.

“Events like this one bring to life the breadth and depth of pathways available to young people in the region, and that insight is absolutely critical to allow us to engage the next generation of business leaders and ensure we can continue to establish the North East as a leading light in this field.”

For more information about the Big STEM Event, visit or call 0191 511 6000.