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Tata Chemicals Europe help next generation of manufacturing at ‘Dragons’ Den’ event

Tata Chemicals Europe were among local companies who helped out in an inter-school ‘Dragons Den’ event at Mid Cheshire College last week.

TCE volunteered their General Manager for Business Services Phil Davies to judge business projects put together by teams of pupils from local schools at the Manufacturing Institute’s ‘Make It In Manufacturing’ competition on Wednesday, 22nd March.

Teams from Hartford High School, UCAN, Weaverham High School, Winsford Academy – and a team made up of teachers! – competed in the day-long competition, in which they had to build a prototype ‘emergency pod’ to be used by the Red Cross in the event of a natural disaster, and a business plan with which to bring it to market.

‘Chief Dragon’ Phil led a team of local business bods in scrutinising the efforts of the groups, who presented to the panel at the end of the day.

Phil (above) said: “We were proud to be a part of this exciting initiative, and we were extremely impressed with the comprehensive business plans put together by all the young people taking part. Choosing a winner was almost too difficult for the judges, and we saw many exceptional personalities shining through.

“Manufacturing continues to be vital to Cheshire and Northern economies and an exciting career prospect for the next generation. As a company that has been part of the local landscape for over a century, we are well placed to provide them with exciting career opportunities for many years to come.” 

Phil was joined by his colleagues Sonal Patel (Learning and Development Manager, above left) and Richard Redman (Communications Manager, above right), who helped coach the students before they faced the dreaded panel of judges. Sonal and Richard tasked the groups with a teamwork challenge, before giving them constructive feedback and scoring their progress out of 10.

Richard added: “We saw some really encouraging examples of teamwork and lateral thinking when we challenged the students to make their way through a maze using the powers of co-operation. The Make it in Manufacturing event helps young people to constructively apply the talents and attributes that are already within them – it was great to see young people showing enthusiasm about a potential career in manufacturing.”

For more information about Made in Manufacturing, visit www.manufacturinginstitute.co.uk