Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
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6 October 2006 PR 06/113

Maths at work Conference

The Mathematics Education Centre at Loughborough University recently hosted a Maths at Work Conference for year 11 students studying in North Leicestershire. This was organised jointly with the National Further Mathematics Network and the Widening Participation Office at Loughborough University.

Over seventy students and staff enjoyed interesting, attractive and stimulating interactive workshops organised by enthusiastic industrial/commercial employees from 3M Health Care, Laing O’Rourke, The Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development at De Montfort University and Bombardier Transportation U.K.

Students learned about how Mathematics is an essential tool in the workplace by looking at case studies prepared by the speakers. The day emphasised the importance of encouraging young people to develop their mathematical skills at school and then for them to consider studying a course related to Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics at University. The industrial applications associated with these disciplines were clearly demonstrated by the speakers who talked about their interesting, challenging jobs. One of the visiting students commented that “it was really interesting to meet important people who use maths when doing their jobs”, whilst another simply said “Learning maths is fun!”.

The day’s conference included a lunchtime tour of the Loughborough University Campus led by postgraduate students and a mathematics challenge where participants competed for prizes.

This Conference is one of a number of initiatives in North Leicestershire and South Nottinghamshire being developed at the University by the Mathematics Education Centre, the National Further Mathematics Network and the University’s Widening Participation Office with the aim of encouraging more young people to study A level Mathematics and Further Mathematics in schools and colleges. Further information about these may be obtained from Rod Bond via r.m.bond@lboro.ac.uk

Further information relating to the Further Mathematics Network can be found on the website http://www.fmnetwork.org.uk

Further information about the work of the Mathematics Education Centre can be found from its website http://mec.lboro.ac.uk

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Notes to editors

Loughborough has an established reputation for excellence in teaching and research, strong links with industry, and unrivalled sporting achievement. Assessments of teaching quality by the Quality Assurance Agency place it in the top flight of UK universities; the National Student Survey ranked Loughborough equal first among full-time students; and industry highlights the University in its top five for graduate recruitment. Around 40% of Loughborough’s income is for research, and 60% for teaching. The University has been awarded five Queen's Anniversary Prizes: for its collaboration with aerospace and automotive companies such as BAE Systems, Ford and Rolls Royce; for its work in developing countries; for pioneering research in optical engineering; for its world-leading role in sports research, education and development; and for its outstanding work in evaluating and helping to develop social policy-related programmes.

In 2006 Loughborough celebrates the 40th anniversary of its University Charter, awarded on 19 April 1966 in recognition of the excellence achieved by Loughborough College of Advanced Technology and its predecessor Colleges. Loughborough University of Technology was renamed Loughborough University in 1996.

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