Video shows The Gadget Show's Jason Bradbury extolling the virtues of KMF's initiative and the importance of sponsor support Having designed, built and raced an electric car for the 2014 event, students will be challenged to look to the future and design a 'Gadget' using a 3D printer. The competition gets underway next month. Enthusiasm is already reported as building, with 25 schools attending a presentation at KMF at which the 2015 project was announced - up from 18 schools this year. Each school was presented with a Makerbot Z18 3D printer on which Year10 students are to create their concept gadget, which will be scrutinised by an expert panel of judges, before the awarding of the KMF Young Engineer of the Year prize for 2015. As with the previous YEOTY awards, KMF has planned its challenge to tie in with the school curriculum, with many of the schools running it as a 'live project'. The challenge will encompass many areas, including engineering principles and business management processes that will help prepare students for that next step into the world of employment. Says Gareth Higgins, KMF's managing director: "The KMF Young Engineer of the Year Awards have grown beyond all our expectations and we are proud of the fact that we are helping to provide what is an excellent opportunity for young people within our geographic area to get hands-on with engineering design and manufacture. We are also encouraged by the support that the project has been given by other local and national businesses across a diverse range of industry groups." With the increased number of schools taking part in this latest event, KMF is calling upon other businesses to get involved by way of sponsorship and mentoring of individual schools. The involvement is a practical way that companies can contribute to the community and also inspire the next generation of engineers. Their role will be to provide some financial support, but most important is the mentoring that they can give to the schools and students. All of the sponsors from 2014 saw very positive benefits from their involvement, with several already identifying potential new recruits as apprentices. Companies wishing to get involved can learn more by contacting awards co-ordinator Suzy Ball on 01782 569060 or email s.ball@kmf.co.uk. One very keen and avid supporter of the KMF YEOTY event is The Gadget Show's Jason Bradbury, who has presented the winners with their awards for the past two years. Says the TV personality: "Young Engineer of the Year is not only a project that addresses the issues faced by UK government, such as skills shortage, and youth unemployment, it is also about businesses taking a lead role in ensuring the next generation of the UK's engineering workforce is fit for industry, it also gives young people the opportunity to experience the world of work and leaves Staffordshire schools with a legacy that enriches their Design & Technology departments and their student's overall learning experience."