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Launched in 2020, Fuel Change - now known as Powering Futures - is focused on creating a carbon-neutral future for the next generation, designed by the next generation. Our Challenge for Education programme is an SCQF level 6 qualification aimed at S5 and S6 pupils which challenges participants to create bespoke solutions to real-world climate issues.

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This game-changing initiative aims to develop students’ skills and confidence in research, communication, and teamwork - whilst also delivering the essential climate education that our next generation will need to drive a positive transition to net zero.

With all the learning materials provided by Fuel Change (Powering Futures), teaching staff don’t need to be subject matter ‘experts’, but can instead focus on facilitating the discussions between students, taking away the pressure often associated with taking on new courses.

The benefits of the programme reverberate much wider, too. We are delighted to have worked in partnership with industry giants AECOM, SSE, VisitScotland, Forth Ports, BAM Nuttall and Intelligent Growth Systems (IGS) to set the challenges that the pupils will be addressing. Each of the challenges set by our industry partners address real sustainability issues being faced by businesses today. So not only will the students gain a qualification from taking part in the Challenge for Education programme, but our industry partners can also benefit by taking on board the ideas created by the brilliant young minds taking part.

Five fore-runner schools have kicked off the Challenge for Education programme this September, which is fantastic. Among the fore-runner schools is St Mungo’s High School in Falkirk and Faculty Head of Humanities, Michelle McMullan, believes the programme has been invaluable for helping the young people to build self-confidence:

“Working with Fuel Change has brought a new and exciting opportunity to a group of our young people this year. The Challenge programme is allowing them to consider real life sustainability problems that industry faces and build their interpersonal and team working skills whilst working on solutions. The programme is also encouraging our young people to develop their own leadership but also initiative, and it has been excellent to see the way that they are engaging with the programme and materials. We are excited to see what the future holds.”

We have big ambitions for the programme. In the next 12 months, Fuel Change (Powering Futures) plans to roll out the Challenge for Education Programme to every school and college in Scotland - and it is great news that Michael Matheson, MSP for Falkirk where Fuel Change are based, has recognised that this is an ambition that is within our grasp:

“I am excited to see the ambition of Fuel Change to expand this to all schools and colleges across Scotland. It is incredibly important to continue to engage young people in climate issues and to better understand our collective impact on the climate, whilst also offering them formal qualifications in this area and employability skills.”

Having the Challenge for Education programme credit rated at SCQF level 6 with 8 credit points is a huge leap forward for students and for schools, representing a ready-to-go solution for delivering climate education and skills in Scotland.

Not only that - it works for businesses that are looking for the next generation of talent too. As previous Challenge participant and AECOM graduate, Joseph Din says:

“Through participating in the Fuel Change Challenge, I have learned how sustainable concepts and processes can be integrated within my own industry. It has also helped me to appreciate the importance of promoting sustainable initiatives as we approach the Net-Zero target dates, and I aim to use the new skills and ideas I have gained in this programme as I progress through my career.”

Get in touch:

Twitter: @poweringfutures
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/poweringfutures/
Email: hello@poweringfutures.com

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