More than 100 north-east high school pupils got to experience the life of an offshore diver, or even an ROV driver, at Subsea Expo 2018 yesterday.
As part of the Energise Your Future (EYF) event, students were given the chance to don diving suits and helmets, operate a subsea power turbine or work offshore using virtual reality technology.
The group was made up 13 to 17-year olds from Aberdeen Grammar, Albyn School, Cults Academy, Harlaw Academy, International School Aberdeen, Kincorth Academy, St Machar Academy and Buckie High School in Moray.
About a dozen subsea companies took part in the initiative, which was held at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre.
Now in its 10th year, EYF is managed by Opito, the global, not-for-profit skills body for the energy industry.
Run as a UK-wide programme, it has been a part of major oil and gas industry events delivered to secondary school pupils since 2008.
Pupils were able to hear from speakers including Natali Shaw from Baker Hughes GE, Subsea 7’s Charlotte Stirton, Aker Solutions’ Ryan Fernando and and Xodus Group’s Colin McClure.
Hugo Studd, 16, who wants to study to be an engineer, said: “I’ve seen so many things that I’m vastly interested in. There’s such a wide variety of things going on and subsea itself is a really engaging area.”
The pupils also heard from those who have experienced subsea apprenticeship programmes and interact with people currently employed by the sector.
Craig Sawkins of Interdive Services said: “The whole point of this from the oil and gas industry’s point of view is to bring young blood into the sector.
“Now that the sector is seeing recovery this is a perfect time for us to go out and work with young people and help them develop a career.”
Interdive put on an exhibition showcasing diving rigs from the past and present, while Rina Consulting allowed pupils to tour an offshore oil and gas platform via a virtual reality headset.
Opito director Christine Currie said: “There are so many fascinating stands here with lots of different subsea companies for the pupils to interact with.
“In the 10 years we’ve been running Opito’s Energise Your Future we’ve seen 11,000 students come through here.
“Every year it’s such an easy sell as there are so many exciting, fascinating and innovative things to see at events like this.”
“The hands-on equipment is a real draw as it’s really interactive. What’s great about these events is that students get to hear first-hand from people that already work in the industry.”