GLOBAL distributor of industrial and electronic products, Electrocomponents PLC, has signed a one-year partnership agreement with Engineers Without Borders International, an organisation promoting responsibility in engineering around the world.
For the duration of the partnership, Electrocomponents will provide financial and hands-on support to Engineers Without Borders South Africa and Engineers Without Borders UK for the annual Engineering for People Design Challenge, as well as for the Inspiring and Building Community Leaders programmes. The competition, now in its tenth year, is a collaboration in 2020/21 between three of the 60 Engineers Without Borders organisations: UK, South Africa and USA.
According to a statement from Electrocomponents, the objective of the challenge is to encourage university students to broaden their awareness of the social, environmental and economic implications of their engineering solutions. “The initiative embeds a globally responsible awareness during a pivotal moment the students’ career and provides an opportunity for them to develop solutions that could make a positive difference to communities and individuals around the world,” the company said.
More than 7,000 first- and second-year university engineering students spanning three continents are competing this year to find practicable ways to improve the livelihoods of people in the neighbouring communities of Lobitos and Piedritas on the northern coast of Peru.
Though popular as a surfing destination, the two towns still experience significant challenges with sustainable waste management, energy, food and water supply, digital communications and transport infrastructure. The COVID-19 pandemic has compounded the difficulties in accessing the economic benefit that the growing tourism industry offers through employment, investment and direct tourist spending.
“As well as providing essential funding to the Engineering for People Design Challenge, Electrocomponents is very much involved at a practical level, offering critical skills training to students to boost confidence in areas such as presentation skills, for example,” the sattementsaid.
Electrocomponents will also sit on the judging panel at the Engineering for People Design Challenge Grand Finals, where the best team from the participating universities, previously selected by academics from each institution, will showcase their solutions in a bid to win the Grand Prize of an educational bursary. The runner up and People’s Prize winners will receive a shared bursary.
Electrocomponents’ collaboration with Engineers Without Borders organisations is part of a wider commitment by the Group to ensure that the company delivers and promotes the highest levels of environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards affecting people and the planet.
Lindsley Ruth, CEO Electrocomponents, said: “Our ESG aspiration at Electrocomponents is to make amazing happen by inspiring a more sustainable world through education and innovative solutions that improve lives. The themes that run through our plan align perfectly with what Engineers Without Borders stands for and we’re delighted to enter into this partnership with them. We believe that through our support and participation in the Engineering for People Design Challenge globally, alongside other key programmes, that we can nurture the next generation of globally responsible engineering leaders together.”