Thursday, 27 November 2014


You may have heard about this in the press recently, but what is it? Black Friday is the first Friday following Thanksgiving and it traditionally marks the start of Christmas shopping season, this is followed by Cyber Monday which is the busiest online shopping day for retailers globally. Giving Tuesday takes place on Tuesday 2nd December, it asks everyone to do one simple charitable act on the day as part of their run up to Christmas. Whether it be making a donation, volunteering your time or just spreading the word, Giving Tuesday is a call to action for everyone who wants to give something back.

This year, the UK campaign has been launched by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), working closely with Blackbaud, the Cabinet Office, and a wide range of charities,companies and sector bodies, building on the enormous success of the campaign in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, Singapore and across Latin America.

Why not make SATRO a part of your #GivingTuesday? Donate now by texting SATR11 to 070070 and the amount you would like to donate, or you could volunteer your time, find out how by emailing 

Monday, 24 November 2014


About 100 Students from Year 12 at Gordon's School got to meet a huge variety of business professionals on Friday 21st November during a frantic 2 hours of Careers Speed Dating, We had a virologist, a web designer, a psychologist, a crime scene investigator, an actor, a wing commander, an accountant, and a member of the royal navy, to name just a few, all of whom were passionate and enthusiastic about their chosen careers.

The students were put into small groups and had 5 minutes to quiz their business volunteer, who was only allowed to answer yes or no thereby requiring the students to try & guess their profession. A further 5 minutes of frantic questioning followed to ascertain exactly what they did for a living and how they had got where they were. A whistle sounded and another willing volunteer from a different profession presented themselves for questioning.

It was fast, frenetic and enormous fun,what was clear from the students feedback was that it has really changed their perception of what the future holds for them and makes it seem much less daunting.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Learning with Lego at Knaphill Primary School

Today, another band of SATRO volunteers, along with our lovely Associate, Peter were at Knaphill Primary School delivering a Lego WeDo workshop to over 90 Year 3 pupils. The pupils worked in pairs to design, engineer and program robots using Lego bricks, a computer, a motor and other special elements. Pupils learnt to incorporate tilt and motion sensors into their designs. They then tested their designs and programming, and after reflecting on what did or did not work they were able to adjust their designs. Pupils were able to apply their ICT, Maths, Science, problem-solving and team-working skills to this workshop and seem to have really enjoyed themselves. Special thanks to Cllr Linda Kemeny for fully funding this event. 

If you are interested in booking a similar event in your school, or even to provide funding for an event like this, click here. 

Thursday, 13 November 2014


340 school pupils visited Surrey Sports Park in Guildford yesterday to spend the day with professional scientists and engineers and to learn about opportunities in science and technology industries.  The students, aged 12 to 13, were taught about career opportunities, ahead of making their choices of GCSE subjects.

At this year’s TeenTech event on Wednesday, activities included solving a forensics crime scene, running a production line and becoming a virus detective. Students could create digital art and see a planet show in an inflatable mobile planetarium.  There was an amazing range of 30 companies exhibiting this year including Virgin Atlantic, Sony, Virgin Media, Surrey Satellites Limited, Glaxo Smith Kline, Laleham Healthcare, The Pirbright Institute and Air Products.

TeenTech was set up in 2008 and is the brainchild of Chris Dodson, from the Institute of Directors (IoD) and Bang goes the Theory (and formerly Tomorrow’s World) presenter Maggie Philbin - who is also currently leading a labour-backed taskforce to look at the IT skills shortage in the country’s workforce.  The event is industry-led and run in conjunction with Surrey educational charity SATRO.

Maggie Philbin said "It's fantastic to see the enthusiasm for TeenTech in Surrey from young people, their teachers and the supporting companies. It's never been more important for young people to be well informed about career opportunities and the different pathways which lead to them. Many students at TeenTech surprise themselves with new found interest in science and technology and then want to take a closer look at industries they may previously have dismissed as 'not for them" 

David Leyshon, Managing Director of CBSbutler said “’Young people today have a myriad of work options. If we are to attract them into STEM careers and thereby address the acute shortage of technical skills, it is vital to stimulate their interest and promote the fantastic opportunities.  That is why CBSbutler is proud to support the efforts of SATRO and TeenTech in achieving these aims.’’

We know the students really enjoyed the day and that it made a huge difference:
In the morning 56% were fairly or very interested in becoming a scientist compared to 75% at the end of the day

In the morning 49% were fairly or very interested in becoming an engineer compared to 68% at the end of the day

72% arrived thinking that people working in STEM were clever interesting and well paid compared to 87% who left the event feeling that way

So a very significant shift in attitudes, which is what we are trying to achieve!


Tuesday, 11 November 2014

SATROclub Research Placements - Celebration Event 2014

Students at the 2013 awards evening
Tonight, we are celebrating the recent SATROclub Research Placements. SATRO has participated in the Science Research Projects ever since the programme's inception some 20 years ago, and has afforded this opportunity to over 800 students during that time. Nearly every school with a Sixth Form in Surrey has had a student placement during this time, most have gained the coveted CREST science award and many students have gone on to exhibit and receive acclaim at the annual Big Bang National Science Fair. Students have completed their research in university departments, hospitals, companies and charities, carrying out useful and often very valuable work for their hosts. Each year a number of their projects have been included in publications and this year is no exception, several students will be able to put 'published work' onto their UCAS forms!

The programme in Surrey owes much to the wonderful spirit of participation which the supervisors have brought by providing interesting and appropriate projects for their students. Many supervisors have commented on the enthusiasm and dedication the students have brought to their work, some even saying they would prefer a SATRO student for a month rather than a postgraduate for a year!

Our thanks are due to all our supervisors; our link teachers, who chivvy the students to apply and complete the programme; all the parents and guardians who support their offspring, and of course all the participating students themselves. 

SATRO would like to thank Esher College for being so generous in hosting the Celebration and Induction Events over the time the programme has been running in Surrey. 

Thursday, 6 November 2014

#TeenTechSurrey 2014 Company Exhibitors - ATKINS GLOBAL

Our big event, #TeenTechSurrey is less than a week away, so here’s another teaser for what we have in store for our visitors on the day. Atkins Global are another of our confirmed exhibitors this year. Established in 1938, specialising in civil and structural engineering design, Atkins is one of the world’s leading design, engineering and project management consultancies, providing multidisciplinary technical expertise. Join them at TeenTech Surrey 2014, being held at Surrey Sports Park next Wednesday, 12th November, where they will be bringing their hands on activity, inviting students to build towers from dried spaghetti and jelly babies.

It’s not too late! If you are (or know of) a sixth form, college or undergraduate student that is considering a career in the STEM (science, technology, engineering & maths) field, and would find it useful to meet with working scientists and engineering representing around 30 different employers – from start-up companies to huge multi-nationals – email Dani Longhurst – to book your place NOW!

Wednesday, 5 November 2014


Calling all 6th form and FE Students...
We are delighted to offer you the opportunity to attend a session to TeenTech Surrey specially designed for Sixth Form students, college and undergraduates; 

When?  Wednesday 12 November 2014, 3.30-5.00pm
Where?  Surrey University Sport’s Park
Who will be there?  exhibitors include:
Laleham Health, GSK - learn about development and large-scale manufacture of cosmetics and household products.

 Air Products, National Grid, BOC - find out about graduate and apprenticeship opportunities in engineering.

Surrey Satellites Technology Ltd - learn about satellite engineering in space!

Samsung, Sony, Maplin, JVC - find out about the latest opportunities and innovations in media and electronics.

What will happen? around 30 different companies will be exhibiting with have hands-on exhibits explaining the science and technology they work with. You will have the opportunity to discover more about the latest technology as well as quizzing lots of scientists and engineers about what their jobs are like.
To confirm your place at this event please email 

If you are a teacher or careers advisor and would like to bring a bus-load of students please contact

Monday, 3 November 2014

#TEENTECHSURREY - Key Sponsor & Exhibitor - CBSbutler

CBSbutler is one of the headline sponsors for our #TeenTechSurrey event, having supported it in both 2012 and 2013. In addition, they have been providing headline support to SATRO’s Summer Science Festival for several years. CBSbutler are therefore enabling over 800 young people a year to be inspired by science, technology, engineering and maths.
CBSbutler is a specialist recruitment company which covers the complete spectrum of technical and functional job disciplines for engineering, manufacturing and technology-based organisations.

David Leyshon, Managing Director, CBSbutler says, “ If we are to stand any chance in addressing the growing shortages in UK engineers and scientists, it is vital that we first address things at grass roots level. High profile events and stimulating challenges are invaluable in building young peoples’ enthusiasm and interest in STEM, and in doing so influencing their subject and career choices. That is why CBSbutler is such a passionate supporter of charity organisations such as SATRO and TeenTech.” CBSbutler will also be exhibiting at #TeenTechSurrey – keep an eye out for their stand!