The Geelong Tech School this week hosted an Industry Design Sprint that brought together students from different high schools in Geelong to solve real-world problems.
The three-day event began with students visiting one of five industries – Ford, WorkSafe, Thornton Engineering, Gen-U, and the SES – to empathise with the industry’s problems and brainstorm ideas for the design challenge.
The students worked in teams to develop innovative solutions, receiving guidance from mentors, industry experts, and teachers. The teams applied the Design Thinking Process, which emphasises empathy, ideation, prototyping, and testing to solve complex problems.
Leanne Collins, Director of the Geelong Tech School, expressed her excitement about the event’s success. She said, “We are thrilled to see students collaborating and applying their knowledge to solve real-world problems. This hands-on experience supports students to make informed decisions about future education and training, and equips them with the skills required to succeed in the workforce.”
Michael Thomas, Head of Research & Development at Barwon Water, was a panel member for the student pitches and was impressed by the level of creativity and professionalism displayed by the students. He commented, “It’s inspiring to see students working together to develop practical solutions to industry problems. These students have demonstrated an impressive level of teamwork and creativity. They have a bright future ahead of them.”
The students’ empathy towards the industries’ problems was evident in their pitches, where they presented innovative solutions to address issues such as workplace safety, environmental sustainability, and community engagement. They took a user-centered approach, considering the needs of the industry and the end-users, and developed solutions that were practical, cost-effective, and sustainable.
The success of the Industry Design Sprint at the Geelong Tech School reinforces the importance of equipping students with practical skills and experiences that prepare them for the workforce. With events like this, students can use emerging technologies to apply their creativity and problem-solving skills to make a positive impact on society.