Thorpe Park has partnered with Middlesex University to hold the first ever STEM Fair at its Surrey resort and theme park.
Taking place on the 26-27 April, the event saw around 1,800 students from 71 schools and colleges across the UK take part. More than 20 interactive exhibits showcased the application of maths, science and how those skills transferred to a variety of careers, including working in theme parks. The exhibits included a VR rollercoaster designed by Middlesex University, a terraforming experience involving sand, a projector and a 3D scanner, and interactive displays with well-known robots such as Baxter and Pepper.
The event was organised by Middlesex’s Debbie Jedwab, senior lecturer in Product Design, and Professor Mehmet Karamanoglu, head of the university’s’ Design, Engineering and Mathematics Department. The two leads were supported by a team of over 80 Middlesex staff and students across all departments in the Science and Technology Faculty, including Creative Technology, Games Design, Virtual Reality, Mathematics and Natural Sciences.
“It was fantastic to see so many excited school kids engaged and interacting with our exhibits, which were run so expertly by staff and students alike,” said Jedwab.
“I was especially pleased to see Creative Technology showcased in public for the first time and this was a great experience for our post-graduate students to meet the public. Showcasing our courses within Thorpe Park, at the heart of the entertainment industry, was the perfect match, as careers in this field are expanding rapidly and will continue to expand.”
According to Middlesex University, the Creative Technology course is an ideal springboard for anyone with aspirations to work in a theme park. The collaborative course uses state-of-the-art broadcasting studios, digital image processing workshops and digital publishing suites, and is focused on creating projects relevant to real industry briefs.
“Graduates from the MA/MSc in Creative Technology take a variety of career paths, from becoming entrepreneurs to games developers to academics,” said course leader Magnus Moar.
“Career prospects are good upon graduation. Employers have included Sony, Accenture’s design consultancy Fjord, Verdant, VRGE, and the designer and engineer Moritz Waldemeyer. One of our recent graduates has appeared in Forbes Africa’s 30 under 30 after winning an entrepreneurship award from Virgin and the British Council.”