When Sheffield United needed new signs for their training ground they turned to future engineers and manufacturers from the local area for help.
The Club’s community division ‘The United Initiative’ worked with pupils from Myers Grove School in Stannington and the Sheffield Engineering Centre who were asked to design and produce signs for United’s Academy in Shirecliffe.
The two groups of students each had to set up a business in order to complete the work, Myers Grove students created the Money Makers company and the Engineering Centre students established Steel City Signs.
Sue Beeley, Head of Community at United said: “As part of our education remit we are always looking at ways we can link with schools and different projects.”
“We have worked with engineering students before and when we needed signs at the Academy it seemed an ideal opportunity to involve them.”
“It is great that we can offer them real projects to work on. We are delighted with the results and will be rewarding their hard work by having them as special guests at a home game.”
The signs have been designed and produced using industry standard computer aided design and manufacture at the centre.
The young business apprentices were given a boost when they met with up and coming United stars Jordon Slew and Harry Maguire, who played in crucial matches which led the Under 18s to the FA Youth Cup semi-finals.
Teacher Louise Tibbs, from Myers Grove School, said: “The students worked extremely hard on this project and it involved a lot of precise and intricate work because the signs had to match the Club logo and badge precisely.”
They really enjoyed making the signs and took real pride in their work as well as learning about business. I am very pleased with the overall outcome as they look very professional. This work will go towards their final grade and after this experience they have been able to expand the market to other companies.”
Working with the United Initiative on the business has also enabled the two groups of students to reach the final 16 of the BiG Challenge 2011 enterprise competition out of nearly 300 entries from schools and colleges all over Sheffield.
Wendy Miller from the Sheffield Engineering Centre commented “These opportunities give the students really valuable experiences and we are delighted it has contributed to them reaching the final stages of competitions.”