Pupils from two schools in Dumbarton have celebrated the completion of a competition designed to launch them into stellar careers in science, technology, engineering and maths.

Youngsters from Vale of Leven Academy and Our Lady and St Patrick’s High School took part in the Go4SET competition's celebration and assessment day at the University of the West of Scotland's Paisley Campus.

Pupils got the chance to showcase their hard work to a panel of expert judges, plus guests from industry, government and the pupils’ families.

The competition encourages S2 pupils to “go for it!” and pursue further education, apprenticeships or careers in science, engineering and technology, getting them out of the classroom and giving them first-hand experience of the workplace.

For 10 weeks, 12 to 14 year-olds work in teams of six with an industry mentor on STEM-themed projects based around real-world problems that need solving, from environmental issues to finance and technology.

Viridor is the main sponsor of Go4SET across Scotland and Steven Don, head of local authority contracts Scotland, said: “As Scotland’s leading recycling, renewable energy and sustainable waste partner working with 96 per cent of local authorities we are keen to encourage young people to get involved in energy management."

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He said the company was delighted to support the Go4SET programme, challenging young people to think about their environment and future.

Like Viridor, these young people, he said, were committed to their environment and conscious of how they utilise resources.

Mentors from sponsoring companies gave up their time to volunteer their expert advice, guidance and support to the teams as they faced up against real-world STEM problems.

Helen Anderson, Scotland director for competition-organisers EDT, said: “Go4SET encourages young people of today to be the engineers and scientists of tomorrow.

"It also helps them develop skills in team working, communication, report writing and problem solving – all essential skills in today’s world of work”.

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