Ron Dearing UTC art students draw new ideas from London galleries trip

A group of Ron Dearing UTC art students are using their visit to some of London’s most popular galleries for inspiration.

Ten Year 12 and 13 students travelled to the capital to visit the Tate, Whitechapel, Eden and various independent galleries on a day-long visit capturing sculpture, film and sound installations.

They also took photographs in London’s popular Spitalfields Market and Covent Garden and saw various landmarks as they took in the sights and sounds of the city on foot.

Ron Dearing UTC art students in London.

 

Lynn Garland-Collins, Senior Assistant Principal and Director of Creativity at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “The students loved it and the feedback has been really positive. They were buzzing with excitement and all they talked about was planning the next trip.

“It’s important for them to see the different types and range of art out there and many of the students hadn’t been to London before, so they were completely out of the environment they’re used to. It was a fantastic and worthwhile trip.”

Year 12 student Erin Rowe, 16, said: “It was exciting and inspiring and we saw a lot in the time we had.

Art students from Ron Dearing UTC are taking inspiration from their trip to the capital.

 

“The Tate was fantastic and the visit showed me that everything doesn’t have to be perfect in art because it’s about your interpretation of things. I’d love to go back to London and see it all again.”

Year 12 student Emilie Cattaneo-Bower, 17, said: “I loved every minute of the trip and the Tate was filled with sculptures, which I love. I’ve created a sculpture for my coursework, so it gave me a lot of inspiration.

“I’m so pleased we were able to go on the trip this year, as we weren’t able to during Covid, and I’m looking forward to similar opportunities in the future.”

Ron Dearing UTC to increase student numbers after planning approval for expansion

Hull’s pioneering Ron Dearing University Technical College (UTC) has been given the go-ahead to expand and increase its capacity.

The Ofsted “Outstanding”-rated school will be able to offer an additional 200 student places after Hull City Council approved its expansion plans.

The first phase of the work to reconfigure the UTC’s existing building in Kingston Square, including two new science labs and a Sixth Form Independent Study Centre, is expected to be complete by August, enabling the employer-led school to welcome a further 80 students from September.

A new hi-tech learning centre will also be created in the former Central Fire Station, next to the school, which will be home to an exhibition centre, a Renewables Innovation Lab, a Sixth Form Centre and a state-of-the-art Centre for Creativity known as “STEAM Studios”, representing the school’s specialisms in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics.

Opening in May 2023, STEAM Studios will comprise of three art and design studios, a ceramics studio, a Mac computer suite, recording studio, film-making facilities and exhibition and performance spaces. This facility will enable an additional 120 students to attend Ron Dearing UTC from September next year.

An artist’s impression of Ron Dearing UTC’s expansion.

 

It comes after the Department for Education’s Post-16 Capacity Fund awarded the school substantial grant funding to grow from 600 to 800 students in response to the huge demand for student places.

Sarah Pashley, Principal of Ron Dearing UTC, which has been over-subscribed every year since it opened in 2017, said: “We’re absolutely delighted that Hull City Council has approved our planning application for the redevelopment of the former fire station building and we can now move forward with our exciting expansion plans.

“I’d like to thank the council and our partners for all their support in helping us continue to grow, enabling us to offer more students the unique Ron Dearing UTC experience.

“The project will prioritise sustainable design and build solutions and focus on the latest green technologies, reinforcing our commitment to decarbonisation, and we’re working with our employer partners to put sustainability at the heart of our curriculum.

“We’ve appointed the Ron Dearing UTC Student Design and Build Team to work alongside the professionals, offering them a fantastic opportunity to build on their knowledge of budgeting, design, overcoming challenges, sustainability and environmental considerations.

“We’re already incredibly proud of the employer-led education model we offer at Ron Dearing UTC and this expansion will enable us to build on that, creating more work-ready young people of the future.”

Ron Dearing UTC Principal Sarah Pashley.

 

Hull Esteem Consortium LEP Ltd is acting as project managers on the project, Space Architects drew up the plans and Sewell Construction has been appointed to complete the work.

The team and other partners are working to ensure the former Central Fire Station retains its original character and has the lowest possible carbon footprint.

Mark Jones, Director of Regeneration for Hull City Council, said: “We’re very pleased to support the expansion of Ron Dearing UTC, utilising the former fire station owned by the city council.

“The school has been a huge success story for Hull, ensuring our young people can reach their full potential in careers aligned to the needs of the local business community.

“This expansion will bring the building back into beneficial use, provide further outstanding facilities for students and add to the vibrancy of our city centre.”

Ron Dearing UTC caters for students aged from 14 to 19 and offers a unique model of employer-led education with a specialist focus on digital technology, creative digital and digital engineering.

The expansion will enable an additional 200 students to study Level 3 qualifications in engineering, creative and digital and provide local industry with an additional 100 highly skilled and qualified potential employees every year.

Ron Dearing UTC student takes on Nepal’s highest trekking peak in charity challenge

A 15-year-old Ron Dearing UTC student who took on a major trekking challenge in Nepal has raised £1,500 for a charity which supports disabled children and their families.

Year 10 student Matthew Preston-Blake and his father Kris Blake took on the daunting task of tackling Mera Peak, the highest trekking peak in Nepal at 6,476 metres.

Despite missing the summit by just 400 metres due to extreme weather and Kris experiencing food poisoning twice, they raised £1,500 for Freddie’s Friends, a Hull-based charity which provides specialist equipment, support and respite for disabled youngsters and their families.

Their adventure tested their stamina to the limit, as they faced sweltering heat during the day and below zero temperatures overnight while sleeping in basic lodges.

Kris said their highly experienced climbing Sherpa guide, Tashi, who had already trekked to the summit of Mera Peak seven times since March, believed Matthew was the youngest western person to take on the gruelling challenge.

Ron Dearing UTC student Matthew Preston-Blake and his father Kris Blake on Mera Peak.

 

It comes after Matthew, accompanied by Kris, became one of the youngest ever people to reach Everest Base Camp when he was just 12 years old, raising more than £1,500 for the Hull 4 Heroes charity.

Matthew said: “Mera Peak was very hard and Everest Base Camp was easy compared to that. We trekked for 13 days in total and we climbed and trekked for nine hours on the longest day.

“I learnt a lot about different cultures and facts about the mountains. If you’d told me when I was younger that I’d be doing this, I wouldn’t have believed it.

“We had to rope up, use crampons and cross crevasses but it hasn’t put me off taking on a similar challenge again.”

Following the trek, Matthew and Kris were invited to Tashi’s house to meet his wife and daughter and enjoy a traditional Nepalese meal together.

Matthew Preston-Blake with climbing Sherpa guide, Tashi, and his wife and daughter.

 

Tashi was previously part of a team which attempted to scale the south face of Lhotse, the fourth highest mountain in the world at 8,516 metres, but an avalanche forced them to abandon the challenge on the border of Tibet and Nepal in 2019. He gave Matthew his jacket from the expedition as a memento.

Kris, Director of Hull and Leeds-based AJ Building, a Partner of Ron Dearing UTC, reached 6,000 metres on the trek and said the experience will stay with him forever.

He said: “With travelling and delays, we’d been awake for 28 hours by the time we reached our hotel and we were collected to leave for the start of the trek at 5am the next morning.

“I got food poisoning twice but I carried on for as long as possible, even early in the trek on day two.

“The weather conditions and adjusting to the altitude was so tough and someone had to be taken off the mountain by helicopter because he was snow blind.

Matthew Preston-Blake and his father Kris Blake have raised £1,500 for charity Freddie’s Friends.

 

“We managed to reach the high camp, which was about 400m off the summit. It would have been about a five-hour slow walk to get there and we could even see Mount Everest and snow leopard tracks.

“It’s one of the hardest physical challenges I’ve ever taken on but Matthew kept me going and I couldn’t be prouder of him. I’m just sorry he couldn’t reach the summit but he tried so hard and reached 6,100 metres.

“We’re really pleased to have raised money for Freddie’s Friends and grateful to everyone who sponsored us.”

Freddie’s Friends was set up by Mark and Rachel Appleyard in memory of their two-year-old son Freddie, who was born with a rare brain disorder and died in December 2008 after battling a series of serious health complications since birth.

Kris and Matthew covered the entire cost of the trek themselves, ensuring every penny raised will be donated directly to Freddie’s Friends.

Year 10 student Matthew Preston-Blake and his father Kris Blake tested their stamina to the limit on their trekking challenge.

 

Rachel, who is also Key Stage 4 Information, Advice and Guidance Mentor at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “I’m so glad Matthew and Kris are back safe and had such an amazing experience. But I’m also incredibly grateful for the fantastic amount of the money they raised.

“It will make a huge difference to at least five children and their families and they’ve also helped the spread the word about Freddie and the charity, keeping Freddie’s memory alive.

“I never want people to forget who Freddie was and that’s why this amazing achievement by Matthew and Kris means so much.”

Anyone who would like to add to Matthew and Kris’ fundraising total can donate online via https://bit.ly/3DsvvuP

Students inspired by gallery and sculpture park visit

Ron Dearing UTC art and photography students were inspired by a visit to two of Yorkshire’s leading cultural attractions.

More than 30 Year 10 and Year 12 students spent a morning at The Hepworth Wakefield gallery followed by an afternoon at the nearby Yorkshire Sculpture Park and a picnic in the grounds.

They completed artistic tasks set by Ron Dearing UTC staff, including work based around a sculpture dedicated to Chinese New Year, and took pictures and sketched as they toured the exhibitions and followed the interactive sculpture trail.

Ron Dearing UTC students at The Hepworth Wakefield.

 

It was the first time the employer-led school’s art and photography students have been able to participate in an external visit since Covid-19 restrictions were relaxed.

Lynn Garland-Collins, Senior Assistant Principal and Director of Creativity at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “The aim was to open up the students’ minds to the possibilities of art and use that to inspire the work they do in the classroom, while also helping them to realise their own creative potential.  The hands-on experience will also maximise their progress in their GCSE and A-level coursework.

“The students were so enthusiastic. They saw 2D and 3D art, video, installations, sculptures and lots of different media throughout the day and it was lovely to hear such positive feedback from them.”

Students at Ron Dearing UTC have been inspired by a visit to The Hepworth Wakefield gallery and Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

 

Year 10 student Josh Robson, 15, said: “I really enjoyed the trip and it was great to walk around the sculpture park. You can experience different forms of art there and it helps to enrich you as a person.”

Fellow Year 10 student Finley Wilson, 15, said: “I found the trip really inspiring and it showed me that art can be simple yet complex at the same time. I want to incorporate that into my work.”

Samanta Anpilogova, 14, also in Year 10, said: “It was a fun and memorable experience and I found it interesting to see art in different environments. You can take inspiration from different artists and it’s much better to see it in person than online.”

Ron Dearing UTC students enjoying Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

 

Year 12 and 13 art students are now preparing for a trip to London on May 6th, which will see them visit the Tate, Saatchi and Whitechapel galleries to support their studies.

Lynn said: “London is the cultural capital and it’s fantastic that we’re helping our students get into the habit of visiting art galleries in person.

“Experiences like this are invaluable and we’re looking forward to involving more of our students in similar trips in the future.”

Students plan colourful floral display to brighten school exterior

Green-fingered Ron Dearing UTC students are creating a colourful, wildlife-friendly environment to brighten up an external area of the Hull city centre school.

The Ecology, Conservation and Gardening group comprises of 10 Year 11 students and one Year 10 student who are all determined to improve the area’s outside space, next to the car park, and the car park entrance.

The students met with local resident Diana Lowthorpe, who has lived in the area for 25 years, to share their planting ideas and drawings as they prepare to spend their £1,000 budget on kick-starting the project.

Their ideas include perennials such as lavender and hydrangeas, as well as roses, honeysuckle which will be planted to climb up the wall of the school building, and several other plants which flower all year round. The students hope to attract pollinators while improving the area for local residents.

Year 11 student Sienna Williams, 16, said: “It’s exciting to do something proactive and practical to help make a difference and I love working as part of a team.

Ron Dearing UTC students talking with local resident Diana Lowthorpe about their plans.

 

 

“We want to make it as nice as possible for the residents and improve the view for them with more colour.”

Fellow Year 11 student Skylar Dawson, 16, created most of the drawings to show Diana where they plan to position the plants and how they hope to bring their ideas to life.

Skylar said: “We’ve got a blank canvas to work from, which is great, and I’m really proud to be involved. I’m happy because Diana was very pleased with our ideas.”

Diana said she is looking forward to seeing the project come to fruition and hopes to support with watering the plants.

She said: “It’s a fantastic project and the students’ suggestions are great. I would love the wall to be covered in colour and the roses are a lovely idea too.

Rory Graham, Biology teacher at Ron Dearing UTC, with the students and resident Diana Lowthorpe.

 

“The plants they’ve suggested are great for bees and butterflies, which is so important, and it’s all very positive. I look out onto the wall and it’s very exciting for me to know this project is starting so soon. I hope I’ll be able to pop out and help them.”

The group has been formed as part of Ron Dearing UTC’s extensive enrichment programme, which encourages students to embrace other cultural and inspiring interests alongside their studies.

Rory Graham, Biology teacher at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “We’re keen to attract pollinators and bring lots of colour and greenery to the area. It will be much prettier to look at once it’s complete.

“We hope we can get more students involved to maintain the area and I’m looking forward to seeing it progress.”

Ron Dearing UTC student Matthew set for 6,000 metre charity trek in Nepal

A Ron Dearing UTC student is preparing for the adventure of a lifetime, tackling the highest trekking peak in Nepal to raise money for charity.

Matthew Preston-Blake, 15, and his father Kris Blake will trek 6,476 metres to the summit of Mera Peak during a 17-day endurance challenge that will test their stamina to the limit.

They are raising money for Freddie’s Friends, a charity set up in memory of two-year-old Freddie Appleyard, who was born with a rare brain disorder and died in December 2008 after battling a series of serious health complications since birth.

Ron Dearing UTC student Matthew Preston-Blake during his Everest Base Camp trek in 2019.

 

The charity provides specialist equipment, support and respite for disabled children and their families and more than £500 has already been raised towards Matthew and Kris’ £2,000 fundraising target.

The father and son duo have funded the entire cost of the trek themselves, ensuring every penny raised through donations is donated directly to Freddie’s Friends.

They will fly to Kathmandu on April 11 and onto Lukla, taking in stunning views of the Himalayas and acclimatising to the altitude and surroundings in the Mount Everest region.

Year 10 student Matthew and Kris are no strangers to trekking and Matthew became one of the youngest ever people to reach Everest Base Camp when he was just 12 years old, raising more than £1,500 for the Hull 4 Heroes charity.

They will be accompanied to the summit of Mera Peak by an experienced Sherpa who has climbed Mount Everest 14 times.

Matthew said: “I’m really excited to reach the summit but also slightly nervous. It will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I’m looking forward to the challenge. I love the culture, the people and everything about the country.

“I hope we can raise as much money as possible for the charity.”

Kris Blake, left, with his son Matthew Preston-Blake, went wild camping and trekking in the Scottish Highlands in preparation for their for their Mera Peak challenge.

 

Matthew and Kris will trek for between six to seven hours per day and stay in teahouses, similar to mountain lodges, overnight.

Kris, Director of Hull and Leeds-based AJ Building, a Partner of Ron Dearing UTC, said: “It will be great to complete another trek with my son and everyone at Ron Dearing UTC has been really supportive.

“I’m really proud Matthew can join me on this trek because he will gain some excellent life skills.

“He gained a powerboat qualification and open water diving certificate all before he was 13 years old and he’s been ice climbing in Scotland. This will be another great adventure.”

Matthew and Kris’ preparation for the trek included a weekend expedition in the Scottish Highlands, as the challenge in Nepal will put their fitness levels to the test during the trip.

Matthew Preston-Blake, left, and his dad Kris on their Everest Base Camp trek.

 

Freddie’s mother Rachel Appleyard, who is also Key Stage 4 Information, Advice and Guidance Mentor at Ron Dearing UTC, said she is grateful to the pair for supporting the charity.

She said: “It’s amazing that Matthew and Kris have chosen to raise money for Freddie’s Friends.

“It’s a small charity run by my husband and I, and every penny raised will make such a difference to the children and their families.

“Everyone at Ron Dearing UTC is so proud of Matthew and Kris. Not only are they gaining such an incredible life experience, they’re raising awareness of Freddie’s Friends too.

“We’re looking forward to following their journey and hearing about it when they come back.”

To sponsor Matthew and Kris click here.

Student team helps to shape expansion of Ron Dearing UTC

Students at Ron Dearing UTC are playing a key role in shaping the school’s exciting expansion.

Ron Dearing UTC has received substantial grant funding from the Department for Education’s Post-16 Capacity Fund to increase its capacity from 600 to 800 students.

The funding will be used to expand the employer-led school’s existing building in Kingston Square, Hull, with the addition of two new science labs and a Sixth Form Independent Study Centre.

A new hi-tech learning centre will also be created in the former Central Fire Station, next to Ron Dearing UTC, which will contain an exhibition centre, two digital suites, three art and design studios and a large Sixth Form Centre.

Year 11 students Emma Giblin, left, and Sienna Williams, both 16, took part in the tour of the former fire station.

 

In line with the UTC’s commitment to decarbonisation, the expansion project will prioritise sustainable design and build solutions and embrace the latest green technologies in terms of heating, lighting and cooling systems.

Plans for the project have been submitted to Hull City Council. If they are given the green light, work is expected to begin in June and be fully completed by September 2023.

The Ron Dearing UTC Student Design and Build Team, consisting of ten students in Years 10, 11 and 12,  has been appointed to work with staff, the UTC’s employer partners, architects, sustainability consultants and the construction team to ensure the new facilities reflect the needs of students, local businesses, the green economy and the environment.

The exciting expansion has created a perfect opportunity for Ron Dearing UTC students to work alongside professionals to apply theory learned in lessons to a real project. As well as having input into the design element, students will be involved in developing the sustainability strategy and budget management.

Sewell Construction has been appointed to deliver the project, following a competitive tendering process, dependent upon planning approval for the scheme.

Steve Dam, Pre-Construction Manager at Sewell Construction, and colleagues from the wider Sewell Group gave the student team a tour of the former fire station.

The students were shown images of how it looked when it was operational as a fire station, site plans, architectural drawings and artists’ impressions to give them an initial overview of the size and scale of the project and the challenges it presents.

Steve said: “It was great to meet the students and hear their ideas. They’re all incredibly enthusiastic and the tour was an important introduction to some of the design challenges we face to ensure the building is as sustainable as possible.

“By involving the students in each step of the project, they will gain valuable skills and knowledge to build on what they learn in the classroom and we’re delighted to play our part in that.”

Year 10 students Oliver Fox and Sandis Logins, both 15, looking at the history of the former fire station and plans for the building during the tour.

 

Year 10 student Sandis Logins, 15, who is part of the Student Design and Build Team, said: “It’s great to be involved and I love working as part of a team. I’d like to be an engineer in the future and this is a perfect opportunity to work on a real-life project at such an exciting time for Ron Dearing UTC.”

Year 11 student Sienna Williams, 16, said: “The tour was eye-opening and it was interesting to see the space. I think the new facilities will be really good and open up more opportunities for students.

“It’s really important for the building to be sustainable and we’ll look at various ways to reduce carbon emissions. It’s great to be part of the team.”

Ron Dearing UTC Principal Sarah Pashley said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for our students to have hands-on input into a major project which will build on our outstanding employer-led education model at Ron Dearing UTC.

“The students are playing a key role in how our new learning centre will look and operate. It will be a fascinating experience for them to work alongside our architects, construction team and sustainability consultants to deliver the project on budget and within a fixed timescale, whilst ensuring we achieve a beautiful building that retains its original character and has the lowest possible carbon footprint.”

The Ron Dearing UTC Student Design and Build Team with Principal Sarah Pashley and representatives from Sewell Group outside the former fire station.

 

As well as ensuring the new learning centre and facilities support decarbonisation and promote renewable energy solutions, Ron Dearing UTC is working with its employer partners, including Reckitt, Siemens Gamesa, Ørsted, Ideal Heating and Equinor, to put sustainability at the heart of its curriculum.

Glenn Jensen, Senior Assistant Principal and Head of Engineering said:  “We’re extremely committed to supporting the Humber region and the UK to achieve their net zero targets.

“In order to do so, it’s essential we produce young people with the knowledge, skills and experience to support the Humber’s growth as a leading region for green energy technologies.

“Our employer partners are working with us to ensure our curriculum does exactly this. Our state-of-the art low carbon learning centre will be the perfect learning environment for our green curriculum.”

The expansion will enable an additional 200 students to study Level 3 qualifications in engineering, creative and digital and provide local industry with an additional 100 highly skilled and qualified potential employees every year.

Ron Dearing UTC has been over-subscribed every year since it opened in September 2017 and caters for students aged from 14 to 19. The school offers a unique model of employer-led education with a specialist focus on digital technology, creative digital and digital engineering.

The Department for Education’s Post-16 Capacity Fund ensures schools and colleges can accommodate an expected increase in sixth form students. Ron Dearing UTC is one of 39 providers across England that have been awarded a total of £83m from the fund.

Businesses back Ron Dearing UTC students in F1-inspired competition

Ron Dearing UTC students driven to succeed in a Formula 1-inspired global competition have raised thousands of pounds at a fundraising event to support their racing ambitions.

Seventeen Year 10 and Year 12 students are competing in the F1 in Schools challenge, the world’s largest Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) competition spanning 40 countries across the globe.

Based on the official F1 model, the teams have designed and manufactured their miniature cars using specialist Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) software, as well as developing their brand, time management and budgeting skills, building their social media presence and linking up with businesses to back their teams.

They recently held a fundraising event at Porsche Centre Hull at the Bridgehead business park in Hessle, which raised more than £10,000 towards offsetting the costs of each team and their potential participation at each level of the competition.

The event saw more than 100 invited guests meet the teams, listen to their pitches, race F1 in Schools-style cars and take part in a silent auction and raffle.

Guests and F1 in Schools teams at the fundraising event.

 

The teams pitched to potential sponsors, including representatives from the UTC’s employer partners, other leading businesses across the region and the students’ families and friends, about how their logos would be displayed and promoted on an international stage in the competition.

Sponsors included former professional boxer and Lightweight Commonwealth Champion Tommy Coyle, who is sponsoring the Mach Racing team, and Jupiter IT Solutions, a Major Partner of Ron Dearing UTC, which is backing the Vortex Racing team.

Some incredible prizes were up for grabs on the evening including a Silverstone experience day, F1 artwork, signed memorabilia, trips abroad and high-end hospitality experiences.

It comes as two of the four Ron Dearing UTC teams – Mach Racing and Vortex Racing – will now go on to compete at the regional finals, which will be held online via YouTube on April 22nd.

The two teams were selected based on their success against specific competition criteria such as their car’s performance and quality and effectiveness of their social media, marketing, presentation skills, teamwork and sponsorship strategies.

The Mach Racing team.

 

Simon Edwards, Teacher of Engineering at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “I’m so proud of all our students involved in the F1 in Schools challenge. The work they’ve produced so far is fantastic.

“We’d like to thank Porsche Centre Hull for their support and enabling our students to host such a great event in a fantastic space.  We’d also like to thank our employer partners and everyone who attended to help them achieve their fundraising goals.”

The competition cars are powered by CO2 cartridges and are attached to a 25-metre track by a nylon wire and raced. They are timed by a computer from the moment they are launched to when they pass the finish line and Ron Dearing UTC plans to plant trees to offset the carbon.

If the Ron Dearing UTC teams are successful at the regional finals, they will go on to compete at national and potentially international levels, with dates and locations yet to be decided.

Sarah and Adam Hodgson, parents of Year 12 Ron Dearing UTC student Mercy McFarlane, 16, attended the event to show their support. Mercy is the Design and Manufacturing Engineer in the Mach Racing team.

F1 in Schools challenge racing cars.

 

Sarah said: “Mercy has become devoted to the F1 in Schools challenge and it has helped her to grow in confidence. She is thriving at Ron Dearing UTC and everyone has done so well to organise such a great event.”

Year 10 student Henry Morris, 14, Social Media and Marketing Manager for team Overflow, said: “I’m very proud to be part of this event and F1 in Schools. It was interesting to speak to everyone who attended the fundraising evening and tell them what we’ve been doing.”

Sarah Hiles, Showroom Manager at Porsche Centre Hull, said: “I sat in on one of the presentations Mach Racing gave to our Brand Director and it would stand up in one of our board meetings. The students spoke so articulately and professionally.

“All of the students represent Ron Dearing UTC incredibly well and they’re so passionate and enthusiastic about the competition. They’re also learning many wider skills such as fundraising and presenting, which will stand them in great stead for later life.”

Ron Dearing UTC increases bike shed capacity as students and staff embrace cycling

Students and staff at Ron Dearing UTC are continuing to cut their carbon footprints after an increase in cycling to school paved the way for a bike shed expansion.

Year 12 students Catherine Crees and Jaden Taylor were crowned winners of The Waterline Student Sustainability Challenge 2021 for their ideas to help tackle the climate crisis.

Their project included researching and calculating how students and staff could reduce their carbon footprints by cycling to school rather than driving or using public transport.

Many of their peers and staff embraced the idea and were inspired to change their travel habits, resulting in the need to double the school’s bike shed facilities and create additional secure space to accommodate dozens more bikes.

Catherine, 17, said: “I’m really proud that we have been able to help people realise how they can become carbon neutral. Being able to provide more space for students and staff to safely secure their bikes is a really positive step and it’s brilliant to see our ideas are being taken on board.”

Jaden Taylor and Catherine Crees with Glenn Jensen, Senior Assistant Principal and Head of Engineering at Ron Dearing UTC.

 

Jaden, 17, said: “It’s great to come up with an idea, work on it and see it come together. It gives me a brilliant feeling that we’re helping to make a difference.”

Organised by Marketing Humber, The Waterline Student Sustainability Challenge, encourages young people aged nine to 18 to plan and deliver their own eco project and find sustainable climate change solutions as part of The Waterline campaign.

Catherine and Jaden’s winning efforts earned them a trip to the global United Nations climate change conference COP26, held in Glasgow last November, and saw them speak about their project at a fringe event during the event.

They also hope to spend their £2,500 prize money on a project that will involve planting a tree in Hull city centre for every Ron Dearing UTC student past, present and future.

Glenn Jensen, Senior Assistant Principal and Head of Engineering at Ron Dearing UTC, is among staff who often cycle to school.

Ron Dearing UTC has created additional secure space to accommodate dozens more bikes.

 

Glenn said: “We’re starting to see how much of a difference making small, personal changes can make in terms of reducing our carbon footprint.

“I enjoy cycling my 24-mile round trip as often as possible and it’s fantastic to see so many students and staff adopting the same approach.

“As a school, we’re wholeheartedly committed to reducing our carbon footprint and playing our part in helping the region to achieve its net zero targets.”

Ron Dearing UTC is also a partner in the recently launched Oh Yes! Net Zero campaign, which is backed by dozens of businesses and will see Hull and the Humber lead the way to becoming carbon neutral.

Entries are now open for The Waterline Student Sustainability Challenge 2022 and Ron Dearing UTC students will once again enter the competition. For further details visit https://thewaterline.global/students

Ron Dearing UTC says Oh Yes! to net zero campaign

Ron Dearing UTC is backing a major campaign that will see Hull and the Humber lead the way to the UK becoming carbon neutral.

We have joined more than 45 businesses and organisations supporting the Oh Yes! Net Zero initiative, which is developing an innovative economic “living lab” model to reduce carbon emissions and support a net zero future.

Launched by the world’s leading consumer health and hygiene company, Reckitt, one of our Founding Partners, together with fellow campaign partners, the initiative brings the private, public and education sectors together and supports the Government’s Levelling Up agenda.

Individuals, communities and organisations are being urged to sign up to the campaign and play their part in reducing their own carbon footprint, while encouraging other UK cities to strive for the same net zero ambition.

The Humber is the most carbon intensive industrial cluster in the UK, meaning Hull and the wider region are crucial to the UK’s net zero drive.

Glenn Jensen, Senior Assistant Principal and Head of Engineering at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “It’s fantastic that one of our Founding Partners, Reckitt, is leading this drive for sustainable practices across the city.

“The Oh Yes! Net Zero campaign aligns directly with our curriculum and the timing couldn’t be better as it links with our expansion plans which have a strong focus on supporting the growth of the region’s low carbon sector by providing the future workforce for these industries.”

Laxman Narasimhan, CEO of Ron Dearing UTC Founding Partner Reckitt, speaking at the launch of Oh Yes! Net Zero. Ron Dearing UTC is among the organisations that have signed up to the campaign.

 

Ron Dearing UTC has received approval and substantial investment to increase its capacity by reconfiguring space in the school’s existing building in Kingston Square, Hull, as well as creating a state-of-the-art new Centre for Sustainability in the former Central Fire Station next door.

The expansion cements the Ofsted Outstanding-rated school’s commitment to the skills needed to support the decarbonisation drive and the growth of renewable energy industries.

The Oh Yes! Net Zero launch took place at Reckitt’s Science and Innovation Centre in Hull, with COP26 President Rt Hon Alok Sharma MP, Reckitt CEO Laxman Narasimhan and leaders of major businesses and organisations addressing attendees. It was also watched online by more than 400 people.

Olympic gold medallist sailor Hannah Mills MBE also spoke at the launch, highlighting the work of the 1851 Trust, a charity which aims to inspire young people through sustainability, sport and education programmes. The event was hosted by writer and former BBC Science Editor David Shukman.

COP26 President Alok Sharma was the guest of honour for the launch of the Oh Yes! Net Zero campaign.

 

Mr Sharma said: “This is a unique campaign illustrating the action we need to see as the UK becomes carbon neutral by 2050.”

Mr Narasimhan said: “I’m delighted that Reckitt, along with our coalition of partners, is bringing together the people of Hull and the Humber to shape the region’s net zero future.

“The Oh Yes! Net Zero initiative, focused on one of Britain’s biggest industrial clusters, aims to unite and galvanise the region behind the central aim of reducing carbon emissions and supporting the UK’s target to become net zero by 2050.”

The founding partners of Oh Yes! Net Zero are Hull City Council, Marketing Humber, Reckitt and the University of Hull, Ron Dearing UTC’s lead education partner.

Individuals, households and organisations can say Oh Yes! to making their own changes to drive down carbon emissions by signing up for tips and advice at www.ohyesnetzero.co.uk