Pupils at a Blackburn school have won project of the year in a project launched by Assystem, an international engineering, digital and project management company.

Three Assystem graduates mentored a team of six students; Lakshaa, Abdulgani, Farhaan, Sophia, Danish and Sara Noor, from Blackburn Central High School in an award-winning STEM project.

The team secured the ‘project of the year’ award in the bronze category as part of the Industrial Cadets scheme, which is overseen by the Engineering Development Trust.

The Industrial Cadets scheme aims to ignite young people's interest in STEM fields and equip them with practical skills for the real world. Assystem's graduates took on the role of mentors, guiding and supporting the pupils through a fascinating project titled 'My School is an Island'.

The project challenged the team to develop innovative strategies to make their school fully functional and self-sustainable as if it were located in an isolated location.

Under the guidance of Assystem's mentors, the six embarked on a 12-week journey of exploration, research, and creative problem-solving.

Mentors provided invaluable guidance, steering the team in the right direction and recommending specific sources for research on sustainable technologies. They also assisted the students in establishing effective teamwork structures and dividing work responsibilities.

Assystem's graduates expressed their delight in giving back to the community and witnessing the students' growing interest and enthusiasm for STEM. They were especially proud to see the students' completed project and the impact it had on their personal development.

A spokesperson for Blackburn Central High School said the scheme provided an invaluable insight into future STEM careers.

After the 12 week project, the pupils were invited along with their mentors and engineering teacher Mrs Ibrahim to a celebration event where the project and models were showcased.

The Year 9 team 'The Engineering Solutions’ (TES) then secured their position as 'Project of the Year 2023 Industrial Cadets Bronze Award'.

“We could not believe when they said our names and showed our school on the display board, I was shocked”, said Lakshaa.

“This opportunity and winning has given us a real insight into engineering projects and the importance of collaboration and hard work.

“Winning this award and having the opportunity to work with industry mentors has given real passion and wanting to know about engineering more.”

Sara said: “'We cannot wait for the next project and being a future engineer.”

Danish said: “We are so proud we got this chance.”

Scott Riley, early careers manager at Assystem, said: "I am so proud of our graduates and the pupils from Blackburn Central High School.

“The skills the students developed over the 12 weeks will be invaluable as they pursue STEM careers, while our talented graduates had an opportunity to enhance their mentoring skills.

“Assystem remains committed to cultivating young minds, championing STEM education, and making a positive impact on the communities we serve."