COMPETITION: Stephenson Award 2020

The Award is for those who have been particularly successful in encouraging young people to study engineering with an emphasis, but not exclusively, on mechanical engineering. In 1997, members of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers made donations to fund a…

The Award is for those who have been particularly successful in encouraging young people to study engineering with an emphasis, but not exclusively, on mechanical engineering. In 1997, members of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers made donations to fund a Worshipful Company of Engineers Loving Cup to mark the Institution’s 150th Anniversary. Donations in excess of those needed for the Loving Cup were used to establish the Stephenson Award and further donations were received from members in later years, supplemented by a substantial grant from Rolls-Royce plc. The Engineers’ Company acknowledges the assistance of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and the Engineering Development Trust (EDT) with nominations for this Award.
Sponsor
Liverymen of the Company who are IMechE Members, Rolls Royce PLC
Eligibility
Typically educationalists, industrialists and leaders of young engineer project competitions.
Award
Medal & £1000 Prize
Success Criteria
A demonstrable success in encouraging young people to study engineering
Winner
Dr Naomi Green
Citation
Naomi is a biomedical engineer who has developed and delivered numerous award-winning science communication projects. She shares her enthusiasm and love for engineering with children of all ages, through a wide variety of activities, such as the Big Bang Fair, British Science Festival, I’m an Engineer Get Me Out of Here and many other examples. She has been a STEM Ambassador since graduating with a MEng degree in 2004 and is an active member of the outreach and public engagement community at the University of Birmingham. In 2006, Naomi was invited as a speaker at a celebration of the STEM Ambassador scheme at the House of Lords. In 2007, in recognition of her work she was invited to a reception at 10 Downing Street for British Science Week.

Since then she has been a postgraduate supervisor for the general engineering Headstart course run by the EDT and has a close relationship with Handsworth Wood Girls Academy, giving careers talks and supported the Girls into Engineering project to develop a soap box go kart. She also planned activities for a ‘Meet the Experts’ event at the Thinktank science museum in Birmingham, and trained her fellow PhD students to deliver it with her. She also co-presented Sarah Bearchell’s Cloud Factory at the Big Bang Fair, an interactive science show designed for SEN children. She has also introduced science busking to her local arts festival CoCoMAD, and brought science to the festival for the first time. She trained a team of STEM Ambassadors to busk and deliver some activities in the science tent. In 2015, she was awarded the College of Engineering and Physical Science Societies Outreach Award. She has now trained other staff and students in our research group to deliver an outreach workshop. It has been delivered over 30 times at local schools and at university outreach events, such as Girls in STEM, Discovery Day and Engineering Taster Days, with consistently high feedback from teachers and children.

Most recently Naomi won £28,000 from the Royal Academy of Engineering Ingenious fund to deliver an innovative outreach project in schools, called Daughters of Invention, with a local theatre in education company called The Play House. The project used drama to engage children in biomedical engineering and raise their aspirations to attend higher education.