AECOM engineers build bridges with local school

AECOM, the world’s premier infrastructure firm has joined forces with South Tyneside Council, Autolink and Sir Robert McAlpine to deliver a 3-day workshop at Mortimer Primary School in South Tyneside to engage and inspire local students about engineering.

85 students in year six participated in the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) North East ‘Bridges to Schools’ initiative. Working with engineers from AECOM, South Tyneside Council, Autolink and Sir Robert McAlpine, students were given the opportunity to learn about bridge construction, teamwork and civil engineering. Using their maths, science, design and technology skills, individuals aged 10 and 11 also assembled a 13-metre model cable bridge with the engineers.

Not only did this exercise enable young people to gain an exciting insight into civil engineering, but also gave them the opportunity to better understand engineering principles and the careers that are available within the sector.

Rory Poole, Head of Highways, UK & Ireland, at AECOM said: “This unique initiative set up by the ICE is a great way for students to visually understand the benefits of engineering, particularly within the local community. It is important we invest time in the younger generation to ensure they understand how they can be part of creating a legacy.”

Gill Cunningham, Headteacher at Mortimer Primary School, said: “Mortimer Primary School are delighted to be included in this fantastic initiative. As part of the scheme, our pupils were given the opportunity to put into practice the skills they learn in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. It helps to create a marvellous team-building ethic and enables the children to showcase their creativity and ability to solve problems. Importantly, this offers both boys and girls an exciting and equal insight into a career in engineering.”

Keith Polson, General Manager of Autolink, said: “This is an excellent exercise which encourages students to think about how their daily lives are affected by civil engineering as well as raise awareness of the profession and perhaps motivate some to consider it as a possible career. The exercise places us in a position to create links between employers, the school and its students and make a positive impact on the learning and development of the young people involved.”

AECOM and South Tyneside Council work closely with the A19 maintenance and operation concessionaire, Autolink along with their Routine Operations and Maintenance Contractor, Sir Robert McAlpine. The collaborative team are working together to deliver the A19 Lindisfarne to Tyne Tunnel Lane Gain, a major road improvement within South Tyneside.