Students Discover High Speed Communications with The Smallpeice Trust

Leamington Spa, United Kingdom, July 25, 2013 --( From 8th to 10th July, 28 teenagers from across the UK got to participate in an exciting new High Speed Communications course, which not only demonstrated the importance of this subject area but the ways in which it is helping our country to flourish and develop both economically and socially.

Sponsored by Aston University and organised by educational charity, The Smallpeice Trust, this course offered students the unique opportunity to discover first-hand the importance of high speed communications through a series of thought-provoking classroom and laboratory sessions as they worked alongside experts within the field, gaining from their experience and guidance.

Over the three days, the 16 and 17 year old students developed their knowledge of components and systems that make up our global communications network by competing in a team challenge which entailed transmitting sound from an MP3 player to an audio amp through the use of optical fibre.

Students also got to discover the fascinating world of lasers, optical fibres, transmitters and receivers whilst finding out all about university life and seeing just how rewarding a career in this sector can be.

Social activities included a sports night, an informal end of course dinner and socialising in the students’ union.

Dr Kate Sugden, Undergraduate Programmes Director, School of Engineering and Applied Science, and lead academic on this course commented: “We have been delighted to sponsor the ‘High Speed Communications’ Smallpeice residential event at Aston University this July. High speed optical communications underpins our modern lives; it was great to see such enthusiastic Year 12 participants rising to the challenge set and building a working fibre transmission link for themselves.”

Spokesperson for The Smallpeice Trust, Lucy Kelly, added, “Working in partnership with Aston University, we have been able to provide students with a unique insight into the fascinating subject of High Speed Communications and the career opportunities available within this innovative sector. We are confident that through experiences like these we can help to encourage more and more young people to choose a dynamic career in engineering.”

The High Speed Communications course is organised by independent educational charity, The Smallpeice Trust, and is part of an ongoing programme of residential courses to help young people aged 13 to 18 learn and develop skills in engineering, design, technology and manufacturing. Through running residential courses and STEM enrichment days, The Trust has reached out to 20,353 students across the UK in the past year.

The new course timetable for 2014 will be launched in the autumn school term. Places are allocated on a first come, first served basis. To find out more, visit, or telephone The Smallpeice Trust on 01926 333200.

About The Smallpeice Trust:

The Smallpeice Trust is an independent charitable trust which promotes engineering as a career, primarily through the provision of residential courses for young people aged 12 to 18.

The Smallpeice Trust was founded in 1966 by Dr Cosby Smallpeice, a pioneering engineer and inventor of the Smallpeice Lathe. Following the stock market flotation of his company Martonair, Dr Smallpeice invested his energy and part of his personal fortune to set up the Trust to ensure that British industry could continuously benefit from his proven design and engineering philosophies: “Simplicity in design, economy in production.”

The Trust is now governed by an eminent board of non-executive trustees and members from a diverse range of engineering, industry, educational and professional bodies.

In the past academic year, The Smallpeice Trust has reached out to 20,353 young people through 33 different subsidised residential courses, 1-day in-school STEM Days and STEM-in-a-Box kits. The Smallpeice Trust has also trained 913 teachers to enhance their delivery of STEM in the classroom.

A strong interface is maintained with industry, education and professional bodies that help to support, promote and develop the courses. Through these relationships the Trust is also able to provide a number of tailored or specialised courses.
The Smallpeice Trust:
Gemma Murphy
+44(0)1926 333214
Or Contact:

Isobel Rowley, National Grid Press Officer on 01926 655275 or