Posted on / in Leader's Award

Competition seeks engineers of the future

Teesside University supports region-wide drive to inspire a generation

An inspirational competition promoting engineering as a career of choice to young people across the region has today been launched at Teesside University.

Funded by Tees Valley Combined Authority, the Primary Engineer® “If you were an engineer, what would you do?®” competition will link primary and secondary schools across Teesside with local engineering firms. Last year it engaged with over 37,000 primary and secondary school students nationally to get them interested in engineering by asking the question and encouraging schools to work with engineers to mentor pupils as they answer it.

The competition celebrates the ingenuity of children from 3 to 19 years of age and all entries are graded by engineers with the winning designs selected by an industry-led judging panel. A special event and public exhibition will be held at Teesside University in the Summer with prizes awarded to winners in each year group. Entries will also be displayed from every school taking part.  Schools from across the region are encouraged to register and encourage pupil entries now.

Launched by Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen, the competition demonstrates Teesside University’s and Primary Engineer’s commitment to provide young people from all backgrounds the opportunity to acquire the skills they need for a rewarding career in engineering, science and technology. The Government says that over 200,000 new engineers are required per year to meet the demands of modern society.

Mayor, Ben Houchen said: “Tees Valley has a proud history and very bright future in engineering. Many Tees Valley companies are leading the way in technology, science and cutting-edge innovation.  Tees Valley Combined Authority are not only looking to provide business and infrastructure support, but through funding initiatives including the Primary Engineer Leaders Award competition we can celebrate and inspire the young people of Tees Valley to become our engineers, scientists and technologists of the future.”   

Dr. Susan Scurlock, MBE founder of Primary Engineer said: “This is our first year of running the competition in Teesside. Given the area’s strong heritage in manufacturing and production we are confident that we’ll uncover creativity and engineering talent in the many schools across the region.”

Dr Dimitrios Nicolaou, Associate Dean (Marketing and Recruitment) in Teesside University’s School of Science, Engineering & Design, said: “Primary Engineer is an organisation that has consistently demonstrated a passion and commitment to the development of young people through engagement with engineering.

“It is never too early to be enthused by the possibilities associated with engineering and the University is delighted to be working with such a well-renowned organisation to help inspire the engineers of the future.”

Teesside University’s School of Science, Engineering and Design offers a broad range of professionally accredited and recognised programmes, supported by research, innovation and enterprise activities. All courses are designed to develop the next generation of problem solvers, innovators and leaders that employers and society needs.

To enter the competition schools can visit