Engineering Week Wales (EWW) was established by ColegauCymru / CollegesWales in 2005 in response to a survey of employers, careers advisers and parents that showed that young people were being discouraged from following an engineering path because it was considered to be a valid path only for the less academically able.
Engineering Week Wales sought to demonstrate the excellent career opportunities that engineering provides the highest achievers, together with a wide variety of employment opportunities across the range of disciplines and associated skills.
Every autumn from 2005-2010, EWW gave school pupils in Year 9 exciting, hands-on engineering experiences at further education colleges across Wales. Over 1,000 pupils per year took part in activities that range from aeronautics and automotive to electronic, manufacturing and mechanical engineering.
Both boys and girls were encouraged to take part. Some centres organised a girl-only day during the week, with participation of JIVE.
Each centre also hosted an Engineering Skills Challenge – with a trophy awarded to the best Year 9 team completing the Challenge. The challenge combined academic and practical skills. Each participating school and pupil was awarded an EWW Certificate of Participation.
In 2010, the last year of the initiative, 75 schools participated, with a team of pupils from each school designing, building, and operating one of a host of products, including:
Key supporters of EWW included: ColegauCymru / CollegesWales, Semta, Engineering UK, City & Guilds and Careers Wales.
A booklet was published each year packed with case studies of young engineers from Wales who had followed a vocational path to success.