Eckington School’s aspiring engineers discover career opportunities

Eckington School’s aspiring engineers discover career opportunities

With 14,000 students in north Derbyshire set to leave school in the next five years, aspiring engineers from Eckington School recently got to see first-hand the apprentice and employment opportunities open to them in the STEM sector.

Five Year 11 GCSE students from the school recently visited the award-winning Penny Hydraulics. The company design, manufacturers and installs hydraulic lifting equipment and is keen to attract the next generation of workers to its Clowne-based facility.

The visit was organised as part of the Made in Chesterfield initiative which is designed to introduce young people to careers opportunities in the town’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) sector.

Launched in 2015, Made in Chesterfield has already been instrumental in raising awareness of careers in the sector, reaching 3,000 students since the campaign began.

Having apprenticeship vacancies available at a range of levels Daniel Casey, Marketing Manager at Penny Hydraulics explained why building links with schools is important for the company, saying:

“Supporting local initiatives like Made in Chesterfield helps Penny Hydraulics to inspire the next generation of workers from the local community.

“By bringing students from local schools to our premises we can give young people a valuable insight into a career in engineering or manufacturing – hopefully enough to inspire them to pursue a career with us and other STEM companies in the area.”

Sally-Anne Warren-Armes, Employer Engagement Manager at Eckington School echoed Daniel, saying:

“Our specially selected students were already interested in a career in engineering and the visit to Penny Hydraulics strengthened these interests, giving them new avenues to think about.”

James Peters, one of the students who took part in the visit, commented:

“The visit has definitely shown that there are both physical and academic sides to engineering.”

All primary and secondary schools throughout North East Derbyshire are being encouraged to sign up to the Made in Chesterfield campaign and discover the employment opportunities in the sector available to current and future school leavers. Employers in the sector are offering school leavers a variety of opportunities, including apprenticeships, degree apprenticeships and graduate training schemes.

The campaign is co-ordinated by Destination Chesterfield with support from University of Derby MSE Hiller, United Cast Bar Ltd, NatWest, Chesterfield Borough Council and Placing Futures.

To find out more about Made in Chesterfield and discover how your school or business can get involved, please visit

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