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Coastal science fair aims to close local skills gap
9th November 2015

West Sussex scientists, engineers and inventors of the future will get a unique insight into the courses and careers available to them locally at a special festival in the spring.

Coastal STEMfest, which will be held during February and March 2016, will be a celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) for schools and colleges in Coastal West Sussex and will help local businesses forge links with schools and colleges.


A series of fun and exciting interactive demonstrations, workshops, shows and events in schools and local companies, it will aim to enthuse the next generation to study and build careers in STEM-related disciplines and to develop the tools needed to drive the economy of the future.


It is based on the success of Crawley STEMfest, an annual event in schools and colleges during May and June that was first held in 2012, and will culminate in the Big Bang @ Butlin’s, Bognor Regis on 3rd March, an opportunity for young people and their teachers to enjoy hands-on activities, discuss ideas, get advice from professionals – and be inspired.

Coastal STEMfest is being organised by a small team including the Coastal West Sussex (CWS) Partnership, West Sussex County Council, Sussex Learning, Network, Tomorrow’s Engineers and STEM Sussex, the not-for-profit outreach department of the University of Brighton that has organised Crawley STEMfest and the Big Bang Fair South East since their launch four years ago.


“Addressing the STEM skills gap has been identified as a real priority for businesses in West Sussex,” said Kirk Brown, Vice President and Site Director for GSK, Worthing and Chairman of the CWS Partnership. “Local businesses are committed to doing more to enthuse young people to study STEM subjects, and we believe Coastal STEMfest will really increase young people’s curiosity.”


This event will be an ideal opportunity for secondary schools to get their students involved and set their learning in a real-world STEM context. It is also a great opportunity for employers to engage with their potential future workforce by providing activities to schools and colleges and at the Big Bang @ Butlin’s, Bognor Regis that will make STEM subjects relevant to local industries.


For further information, contact STEM Sussex, tel. 01273 641874 or email coastalstemfest@brighton.ac.uk

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