Jaguar Land Rover, the UK's Responsible Business of the Year, today announced record breaking figures for its award-winning education programme. More than 328,000 young people participated in Jaguar Land Rover's 'Inspiring Tomorrow's Engineers' school STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) education programme in 2013, an increase of more than 100,000 on the previous year.
Last year's achievement includes 226,000 young people who participated in schools 'Challenge' projects, 100,000 of whom participated in the Jaguar Maths in Motion Challenge alone, and more than 80,000 through outreach activities including secondary school partnership and careers events including Big Bang. More than 21,500 students visited Jaguar Land Rover's Education Business Partnership Centres at its five UK design, engineering and manufacturing facilities and 767 participated in work experience.
Many of these programmes are delivered with the support of dedicated and passionate Jaguar Land Rover employees. More than 2,600 employees spent 11,251 hours supporting school visits, challenges and outreach events during 2013. Jaguar Land Rover employees have visited more than 300 schools over the past years, including the local secondary schools its Midlands and Merseyside sites have long-term partnerships with as part of BITC's Business Class programme.
Speaking at the launch of Big Bang Fair, the largest celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths for young people in the UK, Jonathan Garrett, CSR Director, Jaguar Land Rover said: "It is critical that we attract talented young people to become the next generation of engineers and technologists to support our ambitious growth plans. I am delighted we achieved such huge growth in our education engagement last year which feeds young people into our talent pipeline. We have a wide range of educational initiatives underway with the aim of getting young people excited about engineering and crucially, to encourage them to make the right subject choices at GCSE-level and beyond. Big Bang is a great opportunity for us to showcase the excellent career opportunities at Jaguar Land Rover and we hope it will help us inspire even more young people."
Jaguar Land Rover, lead sponsor of Big Bang, is running various hands-on activities so young people can experience the excitement of engineering for themselves. This includes a fully immersive high tech demonstration explaining the company's vehicle design process and future vision for driver/car connectivity. Young people can also participate in Jaguar Land Rover's Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge and Jaguar Maths in Motion Challenge, the UK's largest maths challenge, and Land Rover Experience demonstration drives on a mini off-road course to experience the breadth and capability of Land Rover vehicles.
A team of 100 Jaguar Land Rover apprentices and graduates are supporting Big Bang exhibits and leading engineering careers tours for school groups. Alice Belcher, Jaguar Land Rover 2nd year Higher Apprentice from Coleshill, Birmingham, took part in a 'Women in STEM Careers' debate with Liz Truss MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Education and Childcare at Big Bang. Alice, who works in Jaguar Land Rover's Solihull Advanced Manufacturing plant, commented, "I enjoyed taking part in the debate and discussing what can be done to attract more women into engineering careers. I explained that Jaguar Land Rover runs various initiatives targeting school girls, young women and undergraduates to attract more females to the industry. I think it is important more employers take this kind of proactive approach. Perceptions of engineering careers are outdated and I visit schools as part of our outreach programme to tell young people about the realities of modern manufacturing and the great opportunities we offer for talented young people, irrespective of gender."