May 19, 2017
Laura Mwangi shares her insights
There’s something special about The Big Bang Competition. I oversee the management of the Competition throughout the cycle and have experienced first-hand the excitement it generates.
The Big Bang Competition gives young people the chance to get involved in project work at, or outside of, school and for that work to be recognised. What makes it special for me is that entry is often via other competitions, meaning it’s not just focused on one STEM area. I find it really exciting that the students can work on projects linked to anything they are really interested in and passionate about.
It gives them a sense of achievement as well offering a chance for sponsors and the STEM community to be involved in something they can be really proud of. Industry sponsorship of the awards makes them even more prestigious and adds real value to the winners, particularly with the experience days many offer.
Another thing that makes The Big Bang Competition special is the access it offers to international competitions, not just for the winners of the UK Young Engineer and GSK Young Scientist of the Year awards but for winners in other categories.
Competitors tell us about how inspiring it is to get recognition for their work. They also get a huge amount out of meeting real life engineers and scientists as well as businesses, especially at The Big Bang Fair. Those professionals offer valuable feedback and advice on how their project can be improved.
The Competition involves all the students and teachers, but also a large number of regional delivery partners, judges, mentors and volunteers. I loved seeing it all come together and meeting the students alongside Greg Foot at The Big Bang Fair in March. In the run up we are in contact with the finalists and read a lot about their projects so it was very exciting to finally meet them and see their projects brought to life.
The award ceremony was really exciting – the auditorium was buzzing! It’s my proudest achievement in this role and the culmination of months of work and a really intensive couple of days onsite at The Fair. It was very emotional seeing how much it meant to the students - and their teachers. This year’s winners are just lovely. I was amazed that they are so young and speak so eloquently and are so passionate about their work. That’s inspiring to me.
Regional heats have begun and we’ve just launched our new website to coincide with opening online entries. My message to anyone thinking about entering? Do it! You’ve got nothing to lose and a potentially life-changing experience to gain.< Back to News & Media