OVER the past couple of months, students from Aylestone School, Bishop of Hereford's Bluecoat School and Whitecross Hereford High School have been coming to Herefordshire & Ludlow College on a weekly basis to attend STEM Club.

Herefordshire & Ludlow College is a STEM Assured Centre, a prestigious award that underpins the college's commitment to providing excellence in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The STEM Club is a way for local students to get a taste of the courses available and to help ignite a passion for one of these subjects. There were three classes available, computing, engineering and music technology.

Computing students were tasked with creating and customised their own version of the popular game Snake, utilising the Python computer language. Students were able to alter parameters of the game, create the graphics utilised and ultimately build their own versions.

In engineering, students put together an ultrasonic bat detector, building the device from a kit where they had to solder parts together, requiring patience and skill. They then designed an enclosure for the device, which was 3-D printed here at the college. Similar devices are used in industrial engineering for non-destructive testing of materials, listening out for ultrasonic frequency creaks and strains in materials.

Music students were given free range of the comprehensive studio facilities at the college, including a top of the range Mac suite, recording studios and instruments. They were tasked with producing their own tune, utilising any method that suited their creativity.

The course ran for several weeks, and culminated in a showcase for parents and teachers to attend and see what the students had achieved in their time here.

In a mini graduation, each student received a certificate, as well as the opportunity to display what they had done while here to their family and friends.

Speaking of the event, assistant principal Jon Gill said "These after-school STEM Clubs have been a great success, giving pupils from local schools the opportunity to acquire new skills and knowledge through accessing the specialist teaching and resources that the college can offer, whilst at the same time inspiring the next generation to consider STEM as a career path for the future. The pupils have been a credit to themselves, their schools and their family."