Powering the Future with Glasgow Science Centre


17th June 2014

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Glasgow Science Centre has revealed that almost three quarters (£1.1m) of the funds required to bring its latest innovative exhibition to encourage young people into the energy sector have been found. Now the Centre is calling on businesses in the energy industry to help support them in raising the remaining funds for its Powering the Future exhibition.

The exhibition, one of the most advanced of its kind, will cost £1.5million to develop and will shine a light on the innovation and engineering excellence that is happening in the energy sector in Scotland. Designed for all ages, Powering the Future will feature over 100 interactive exhibits that will explore the many different technologies operating in the sector. The exhibition will encourage visitors to think about different ways energy is generated, how it works, public demand on energy resources and its different uses on an individual, regional, national and global level.

Powering the Future is expected to launch in October 2015 and considerable funds amounting to £1.1m have already been received from; Scottish Government, Skills Development Scotland, UK oil and gas industry skills organisation OPITO, SSE, ScottishPower and EDF Energy. Opportunities to be part of the innovative exhibition are still available and Glasgow Science Centre is appealing for support towards raising the remaining £400,000 to help bring it to life.

Dr Stephen Breslin, chief executive of the Glasgow Science Centre, said:

“We are encouraged by the funding raised so far for what will be a truly fantastic exhibition and would like to thank all involved. Powering the Future will be a unique addition to Glasgow Science Centre and will help shed light on the important subject of power to all generations. There are still opportunities for businesses to get involved and we welcome support from organisations to help us achieve our target of £1.5m.

“The exhibition will bring to life the story of energy in a creative and interactive way that will encourage people of all ages to think about its use now and in the future. The issue of power generation and use is not going to go away soon and through the exhibition we want to provide people with the tools to learn more about the industry while encouraging a new wave of young people to consider a career in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) to ensure future generations have sustainable power sources.”

The exhibition will highlight the varied career opportunities available in the sector and will form part of the Centre’s overall education programme which last year welcomed its biggest number of pupils.

Commenting on the announcement, Fergus Ewing, Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Tourism, said:

“I am very pleased to announce funding support of £250,000 towards the development and provision of the Glasgow Science Centre’s newest exhibition installation, ‘Powering the Future’. As well as promoting energy-related careers to young people, it will also educate people of the importance and means by which Scotland can achieve a successful transition to a low carbon economy. One area of the exhibition that I am excited about allows young people to challenge and experience what it is like to be the “Energy Minister for the day” where they can learn about energy sources and mixes that will contribute to our future renewable energy and climate change targets.”

Dr Breslin added:

“Scotland is experiencing a real and serious skills shortage as fewer pupils choose STEM subjects and careers. It is our ambition that this exhibition will demonstrate the wide variety of careers that are available to all in the energy sector. Exhibitions like Powering the Future will support the recent Wood Report which calls for a focus on STEM and aims to enhance the way we work with young people, employers, schools and colleges to ensure they have the choices and opportunities to fulfil their career potential. The exhibition will also provide a valuable opportunity for the sector to engage directly with young people and raise awareness of the many real and varied careers that are available in these industries.”

Darah Zahran, policy and external affairs director at OPITO, said:

“The oil and gas industry contributes billions to the economy and employs more than 150,000 people in Scotland alone. It is one of the most exciting and dynamic sectors in terms of the diversity of careers, ground-breaking technologies and global opportunities it offers.

“Encouraging young people to pursue a career in the energy sector starts by fostering an interest in the core science, technology, engineering and maths subjects which are critical to ensuring we inspire the next generation of pioneers.”

Powering the Future will be the second major exhibition refresh at Glasgow Science Centre in recent years and follows the success of BodyWorks. Launched in March 2013, BodyWorks has already welcomed over 300,000 admissions including over 81,000 school pupils who have had the opportunity to learn about the human body. The BodyWorks exhibition is in place until 2019 and will run alongside the Powering the Future exhibition, which the Centre hopes will run for six years. Within this time, the Centre, the biggest of its kind outside London, hope to attract an audience of 1.8million visitors.

For more information on Powering the Future or to register your donation, please contact Dr Stephen Breslin on 0141 420 5000.

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