Back in March, three students; Amelie, Hattie and Cathryn, competed against teams from around the country to win the BP Ultimate STEM Challenge, BP’s annual STEM competition for students aged 11-14. The final was held in the Science Museum in London in front of a panel of judges including STEM ambassadors and experts from within BP.
Their project presented a solution to a real-life engineering design challenge around flight, creating the optimum wing design for a drone. The judges praised their entry for the innovative way it took inspiration from the flying Draco lizard.
The three winners and their classmates were awarded the Ultimate STEM Lesson which saw them being whisked away to iFLY in Milton Keynes, an indoor skydiving centre, where they met Reggie Yates and completed a series of flight-themed activities as part of a mission to understand the science of flight.
The winners were astonished and excited as it was announced that they were going to be able to experience flight for themselves by having a go in the skydiving simulator.
Reggie Yates said: “It’s always great to see young people excited by science, so it’s fantastic to be able to reward the Ultimate STEM Challenge winners with an opportunity like the Ultimate STEM Lesson today. Seeing these young people using their creativity and problem-solving skills to tackle a difficult science challenge is so inspiring.”
Sally Huntly, head of science at Bredon Hill Academy, said: “The girls worked so hard on their competition entry and have been talking about the final ever since they won! Today was a great way to celebrate their success – they really didn’t expect any of this, so it was a great surprise.
“The Ultimate STEM Challenge has given them a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, not just by winning but in understanding the excitement of STEM and seeing where it can take them in the future.”
BP has been supporting the development of the next generation of scientists and engineers for nearly 50 years. Through investing in programmes such as the Ultimate STEM Challenge, BP inspires and encourages young people to study STEM subjects and to choose STEM-related careers.
The Ultimate STEM Challenge is now open. This year we're challenging young people to help create a more sustainable future.
Visit the BP Educational Service website to find out more about this year's challenge and to explore the many other resources provided.