University of Brighton have been running an F24 Saturday Club since 2018, giving young people across Sussex the opportunity to be involved in an exciting and hands-on engineering project.
The initiative, run by charitable organisation Greenpower, sees teams of young people from across the country build and race kit cars. University of Brighton invite young people in years 9-11 from our partner schools across Sussex to take part in a series of sessions run by Johanna Harris, Schools and Colleges Outreach Co-ordinator along with PhD student Sean Kennedy and a brilliant team of engineering technicians and ambassadors. The club culminates with the teams racing their cars against other teams at Goodwood.
With over 100 applications for 32 places F24 at Brighton is a popular club. Jo tells us more about it and the opportunities it presents:
“A lot of the teams are run though private schools and businesses, and accessed by young people from very different backgrounds from those on our club. We give the young people lots of time in the workshop, building the cars with guidance from ambassadors and technicians. They are often a bit nervous when they first arrive as most don’t know anybody else. They develop strong bonds and team working skills during their time with us as well as learning how to use tools, understanding schematics for building the car and finding out what studying engineering at university is like.
“As well as building the electric cars which are in kit form, they have a talk and a session on aerodynamics using the wind tunnel; go on our simulators where they have a virtual drive around the Goodwood track; they design, build and battle small antweight robots; work in teams to come up with a team name and logo for their car; design a keyring using CAD and have it 3D printed; learn about the history and development of electric vehicles. The teams test drive the cars on the roof of the Moulsecoomb multi-storey carpark and then we travel to Goodwood for race day.”
Jay is studying Design Engineering at Brighton and is one of the student ambassadors involved in the club and explains what they enjoy most about it. “I work in the workshop and the information sessions, and enjoy teaching and showing younger students the basics and seeing their enjoyment and understanding. I also enjoy seeing young students want to pursue engineering as I do.”
Everyone involved is looking forward to race day at Goodwood on 30 April when over 100 teams will take part in a day of racing. Check back to find out how our teams get on after the big day.