Members of Ideagen’s development team were on hand to lend their expertise to a local high school recently, helping pupils gain a basic understanding of code as part of a technology project.
The pupils of Holy Cross High School’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) club, based in Hamilton near to Ideagen’s East Kilbride office in Scotland, were challenged with creating a model car with the ability to move on its own through micro:bit technology.
The pupils had various ideas on how they wanted to use the technology to complete their project and invited Ideagen’s developers – David Turvey and Kieran Harris – to the school for guidance.
Julie Caldwell, Teacher of Mathematics at Holy Cross, said: “As a school, we are extremely keen for our young people to gain a basic understanding of the skill involved and also the impact and opportunities available from being able to code and understand technology in general.
“In terms of this project, most of our STEM club completed the construction of the model car with various plans on how to use the micro:bit technology to enhance it. Some pupils wanted to programme working lights for the vehicle while others had the ambitious plan of building a replica of a radio controlled vehicle they saw online.
“Due to the varying degrees of skill required for each project, we were very grateful to be able to call on the help and advice of both David and Kieran from Ideagen. They were excellent and the pupils really enjoyed chatting and listening to guidance on their individual projects and the specific problems they faced.”
The micro:bit technology is an ARM-based embedded system which was designed by the BBC for use in computer education in the UK. Its aim is to raise awareness of coding among children and young adults and has gained partnership from the likes of Microsoft, Barclays, and Samsung. The technology is now widely used in schools around the world, from Finland and Iceland to Singapore and Sri Lanka.
Ross Gledhill, Ideagen’s Head of Design and Definition, was pleased that his team could help the pupils. He added: “We first learned of this fantastic project during a recent visit to the school as part of their careers fair and immediately wanted to help out.
“Encouraging young adults into the world of coding and technology, in general, is crucial for companies like ourselves and for the wider industry. Scotland, and indeed the rest of the UK, is a hotbed of technical talent and being involved in projects like this will only help to unearth the coders of the future.
“We were delighted to be involved in this project. Hopefully, we’ve helped to spark an interest in technology – and coding in particular – among the pupils.”
Ideagen is a UK-based, global software company with more than 450 staff worldwide and over 3,500 customers including British Airways, Emirates, BAE Systems and the European Central Bank.
The company, which has a major operation in East Kilbride’s Scottish Enterprise Technology Park, develops quality, safety, audit, risk and compliance software.