Working with local authorities in the North and North East of England, project developers of Dogger bank Wind Farm, SSE Renewables, Equinor and Eni are committing £1 million to STEM education for young people from coastal communities.
In order to prepare young people for working life in a net zero world, a programme is under development in order to expand the provision of science, technology, engineering and maths at the 142 chosen schools across South Tyneside and East Riding of Yorkshire. Young people in the Redcar and Cleveland area will also benefit from the programme which is the area that the third phase of the wind farm will connect to the National Grid at Lackenby.
Steve Wilson, Project Director for Dogger Bank Wind Farm, said: “We estimate more than 25,000 young people from 142 schools in the north and north-east of England will benefit from this funding, as we open their eyes to the green industry opportunities of our net zero future. Renewable energy will increasingly become a source of skilled jobs in the UK as we come through the pandemic, and rebuild our economy. This is one of the most significant investments the offshore wind industry has made in future skills, and could be the key to unlocking the future potential of many young people, as we put STEM skills at the very heart of their learning.”
In addition to the benefits of the programme, 50 students from these regions will receive a scholarship to assist with the cost of further academic qualifications whilst studying STEM subjects.
Alongside their contribution to the STEM fund, Dogger Bank Wind Farm have also proposed £13.5 million of investment in the ‘Offshore Wind Growth Partnership’ over the lifetime of the project to support the growth of the UK offshore wind supply chain.
With net zero targets firmly in everyone’s minds, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister, Gillian Keegan, said: “As we recover from the pandemic, we’re investing billions of pounds to help the UK become a global leader in green technologies. This includes the creation of up to 250,000 jobs by 2030 through our Ten Point Plan, which will be critical in delivering a green industrial revolution. It’s fantastic to see the developers of Dogger Bank Wind Farm supporting this by investing in science, technology, engineering and maths skills. Not only is the world’s largest offshore wind farm pioneering new technology, it is also innovating in the way it’s supporting coastal communities to ensure young people are equipped to access the green jobs of the future.”