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Engineering students visit construction site

Harry Snell (left) and Ethan Cook study the site plans.
Harry Snell (left) and Ethan Cook study the site plans.

A group of Year 10 BTEC engineering students from Plympton Academy had their first experience of a construction site recently.

They didn’t have far to go as they visited the site where the school’s new state-of-the-art Performing Arts Centre is being built.

“The students have been investigating various engineering sectors,” said Head of Engineering Ian Glanville. “This visit was a great opportunity to examine other of areas of engineering and get a hands on feel for how skills, such as the need for accuracy when producing engineered components in the practical classroom, translates to their real world use in the industries such as construction.”

The students were all interested in the movement of materials around the site using heaving machinery and asked lots of questions about how the plans provided by the engineers are reflected in the building site they could see.

“I enjoyed using the laser level and it was good to experience something that I might come across in a future career,” said Ben Campbell.

Fellow engineering student Henry Snell said it was good to see a real life building going on rather than watching it on YouTube. “It was interesting to see the various rooms that were beginning to take shape from the blockwork that was being built and how the older building was, according to the plans, being incorporated into what was being built.”

The students were shown around by Site Manager Sheldon Roberts. “I had the pleasure to talk to the Year 10 engineering students and hopefully show them another valued route of engineering into construction. It was a fresh morning to be stood around listening to me, but the students showed enthusiasm to the talk and being able to set the site level.

We discussed the different elements of engineering within the industry, from design, structural engineers and setting out engineers and although it was brief, hopefully they were able to see how important engineers are to the construction industry and maybe help them to explore the wider engineering avenue.”

Ben Campbell, with Site Manager Sheldon Roberts, who is assisting Ben in using a laser level to check the accuracy of the construction.