Stuart McMillan MSP for Greenock and Inverclyde met the Inver Racers team on Monday 10 June 2019 at West College Scotland’s (WCS) Greenock campus to see how they are preparing for the International Final at Silverstone in October.
Over the academic year, the team of Inverclyde Academy pupils have built their own F24 racecar and attended WCS’s Greenock campus to learn engineering skills as part of a WCS and Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) initiative.
Inver Racers have to run their race team like a business – raising money and securing sponsorship from local businesses – and their hard work has paid off, as they were recently crowned Scottish champions at the Greenpower Challenge competition in East Fortune. As a result, they are now fundraising so they can compete in the International final at Silverstone later this year. You can donate to their Just Giving page here.
Commenting after the visit, Mr McMillan said:
“The Inver Racers team have done tremendously well to become Scottish champions, and it was great to hear their enthusiasm for the project as they showed off their racecar.
“It’s clear that they’ve benefitted from taking part in the engineering classes, and their eagerness to attend college next year doing a vocational Car Body Repair course alongside their school work is testament to that.
“Opportunities like this can lead young people onto careers they had never previously considered, so I’m delighted that this initiative is being continued and hopefully other schools locally will get involved or look to set up similar projects.”
Alistair Rodgers, Head of Engineering at WCS, said:
“WCS were delighted that Stuart McMillan MSP was able come along to the College to support the Inver Racers as they continue their journey towards the UK Greenpower Final at Silverstone.
“The Greenpower programme offers a fantastic opportunity for young people to develop their confidence, team work and problem solving skills through the STEM-focused team-based learning project.”
Bob Davidson, Programme Director for DYW West Region, said:
“The Greenpower initiative is an excellent example of a partnership model working to make a difference to young people’s lives. This was particularly evident at our recent Greenpower Graduation where families and teachers attended with the pupils to jointly celebrate their success.”
Sabrina McCready, Depute Head Teacher at Inverclyde Academy, added:
“This is our second year participating in the Greenpower Challenge and the project is going from strength to strength. The four finalists have shown a wide range of skills over the year and seem to be growing in confidence with each week that passes.
“They have all been accepted to attend a vocational Car Body Repair course as part of our school-college partnership next session and they are looking forward to it a great deal.
“We work hard with each and every pupil at Inverclyde Academy to secure a positive and sustainable destination that is appropriate for them and this team have demonstrated what success can be achieved with some hard work and determination. We are incredibly proud of them.”