• 2016 3M Young Innovators Challenge awards evening

    June 01, 2016
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    There was tremendous excitement as the winners of this year's top awards were announced at the awards evening.

    There was tremendous excitement as the winners of this year's top awards were announced at the awards evening.

    There was tremendous excitement as the winners of this year's top awards were announced at the awards evening.

    • Awards Evening - 2016

      The 2016 Challenge had attracted a grand total of 184 entries – a massive increase of 84 per cent over last year – and involved some 567 pupils and students from 37 different schools in Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire.

      More than 160 pupils and students who took part in the programme also achieved a British Science Association CREST Award – a UK-wide STEM enrichment scheme which enables students to gain a nationally recognised accreditation for their personal statements.

      Rosalind Smith, Julie Owen and Laura Brett from 3M’s Corporate Communications team managed the challenge scheme and hosted the presentation night held at Loughborough College.

      “We want to positively impact young people’s career choices by showing how STEM subjects give access to a wide range of dynamic and fulfilling opportunities,” Rosalind told the audience of over 200 students, parents and teachers.


    • A new category for the scheme this year was the Canyon Crossing Challenge for primary school children. Pupils were asked to design and build a bridge which could hold up to 10 kilos while weighing as little as possible. It was won by a year 5 student at Fairfield Preparatory School in Loughborough, who taught himself to knit to make a bridge inspired by a Hawaiian hammock.


    A Super Food Challenge was run for the second year, open to primary and secondary school entries to develop and make a healthy snack or drink, considering its nutritional content and the scientific processes involved in its production.

    The younger age group was won by a team from Mountfields Lodge Primary School in Loughborough with their Mexicorn – a Mexican-inspired spicy popcorn with a coriander and avocado dip. A team from Limehurst Academy was the winning secondary school with Sublime Bites, packed with Italian-style vegetables and a smiley low-fat cheese ‘face’.

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    The Eco Tech Challenge, set the task of creating either an eco-accessory or a decorative garden sculpture from recycled material.

    A pupil from Waltham on the Wolds Primary School was the primary school winner for welding a model sheep out of discarded horseshoes. The secondary school winner was a team from Our Lady’s Convent School in Loughborough for a range of knitted bags and accessories made from surplus local Council recycling bags.

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    The final challenge was the Science Detectives Challenge, which was organised with the Faculty of Health & Life Sciences at Leicester’s De Montfort University, a leading centre for the teaching of forensic science. Secondary school students had to solve the case of the ‘Priceless Diamond Necklace Ransom’ and the winners were the Ivanhoe Private Eyes team from Ivanhoe College at Ashby-de-la-Zouch.

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    Each of the winners won prizes worth £750 for their schools and individual £50 gift tokens for themselves.

    The evening provided the opportunity to view a fabulous display of all the finalists’ projects. This reflected the exceptional creativity, ingenuity and presentation skills demonstrated by the students who were all congratulated for their excellent work.