11 Feb HP Awards QMC £40K funding for 11 STEM and ESports Development
Innovative, forward planning and a clear vision. Those are QMC attributes that have been recognised by multinational information technology company Hewlett Packard, resulting in the college securing £25,000 for continued ‘future-proofing’ of STEM provision.
Over the past two years, QMC’s IT department have built relationships with HP, opening up opportunities for both HP and the College to explore the use of technology in education. Following a site visit from HP’s Field Business Development Manager, Alex Brazill, and the company’s Global Account Manager it soon become apparent that QMC’s strategy and ideals were closely aligned to HP’s vision. They were particularly impressed with the way QMC shares our support and knowledge with schools, who do not have access to the same resources, where the best interests of young people is at the heart of everything we do.
When choosing a winner for the Tech Fund Bid the judges voted unanimously to award the £25,000 to Queen Mary’s College.
“The video QMC submitted as part of the bid was the best we had seen.” Commented Alex. “It was heartfelt, demonstrated clear outcomes of the vision and made us feel confident that the money would be put to effective use.”
Some of the money will be used to purchase items such as VR headsets, digital microscopes, 3D printers and portable items that facilitate ‘STEM Seller’ visits to local schools. There are also plans to purchase cutting edge ‘HP Spout Pro’ technology that empowers manipulation of the physical and digital worlds in innovative ways.
Pictured L-R James Godfrey (Director of Information and Learning Technology for QMC) Claire Budden (IT Operations Manager for QMC) receiving the cheque for £25,000 from Alex Brazill (Field Business Development Manager, HP)
Claire Budden, IT Operations Manager for QMC commented “We feel very fortunate and excited to have secured the Tech Fund Bid. It will further enhance every element of our STEM provision, opening up new possibilities and dimensions to learning for our existing students. We are already planning further engagement with feeder schools and their teaching staff and are very excited about the new equipment that is on the way for use in the Primary Science Centre.”
Regarding Academia’s involvement in QMC’s tech fund entry, Claire was keen to mention “We have developed a strong partnership with Academia. Starting with our initial Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) project, which has been very successful, they have grown into becoming our preferred HP Partner. And their knowledge, support, advice and positivity with our submission gave us additional confidence in our ability to win.”
In addition to the £25,000 Tech fund QMC students have also benefitted from a generous £15,000 contribution from HP towards setting up an Esports studio. The Esports industry is rapidly growing in Higher Education establishments. With other colleges and schools likely to follow suit with their own facilities, HP selected QMC as an ‘early adopter’ providing their support to students who are interested in a career in the rapidly growing industry.
There has been a lot of interest already from students studying at the College, with 60 students signed up to the enrichment course. QMC has aspirations to enter our newly formed eSports team into the British Esports Association tournament starting in January 2020. James Fraser-Murison (Director of Learning for the Creative Arts) commented “The gaming industry currently makes more income for the UK than both the film and music industry combined. Our students are keen to participate in this popular, exciting, and contemporary industry and we are most grateful to HP for helping to make this a reality” James Godfrey, Director of ILT for QMC added “We are delighted with the computer hardware that HP has provided, their support has been excellent and has enabled us to very quickly provide a start-of-the-art facility at a very affordable price for the College.”