A TEACHER from Clyst Vale Community College in Exeter was surprised and delighted to receive the Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge Teacher of the Year Award at the recent Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge UK Finals.

The ‘Clystalians’ team from Clyst Vale Community College were crowned 2014 Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge UK National Champions after a hard fought National Finals event held at Jaguar Land Rover’s Design and Engineering Centre in Gaydon.

The team of 13 to 15 year old students won an Arkwright Scholarship from lead sponsor Jaguar Land Rover, a £1,000 scholarship for Harper Adams University and the prestigious Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge trophy.

Dave said of winning the award, “I'm absolutely flabbergasted to win Teacher of the Year for the 4x4 in Schools challenge. What can I say, it comes from the students, we work together, we work hard, but to have this recognition is really overwhelming.”

Over the past six months, thousands of young people aged 11-19 have participated in the Challenge and have been designing, building and testing miniature remote-controlled 4x4 vehicles with support from Jaguar Land Rover engineering graduate mentors.

In each stage of the Challenge, teams must successfully negotiate a series of obstacles and tasks with their vehicles and present their work and knowledge of 4x4 vehicle designs to a panel of judges and have their remote control car put under intense scrutiny by vehicle design specialists, against a comprehensive set of rules and regulations.

Gerry McGovern, Land Rover Design Director, said, “Creative thinking, innovation and problem solving have always been some of the fundamental reasons behind Jaguar Land Rover’s success. It’s extremely important we develop these core skills in the next generation of Jaguar Land Rover designers and engineers so we continue to produce vehicles which meet our customers’ needs.

"The Challenge develops students’ creative and hands-on skills and highlights the importance of team-working which plays an important part in our success. I hope the tours of our Design Studio and Virtual Innovation Centre, as well as the Challenge overall, will inspire more young people to pursue design and engineering careers.”

Andrew Denford, Chairman of Engineering in Motion, which runs the Land Rover 4x4 Challenge, commented:

“The Land Rover 4x4 in Schools programme increases the engagement of young people with STEM subjects through the practical application of design and technology, mathematics and science. It is an excellent opportunity for students to work in teams and gain an awareness and understanding of key skills and project management.

"All the teams have produced outstanding work and made it very difficult for the judges. The brand new test track with its unique ‘up, through and over’ section around an all-new Range Rover proved a massive hit with the teams, but the challenge isn’t just won by the performance on track as ‘Clystalians’ proved today, with their well-engineered and innovative vehicle and superb all-round performance.

"Congratulations to ‘Clystalians’ and all the teams competing today on reaching this stage of the competition.”