Teen tech wizards take the collaboration prize in London

From left, Tom Lawrence, Jack Belisle and Alistair McCubbin were successful at the National Teen Tech Awards final.
From left, Tom Lawrence, Jack Belisle and Alistair McCubbin were successful at the National Teen Tech Awards final.

A trio of Morpeth high school students are off to Buckingham Palace after receiving a prestigious national accolade.

Alistair McCubbin, Tom Lawrence and Jack Belisle were the winners of the International Collaboration category in this year’s National Teen Tech Awards.

Their entry was called ‘AidShip’ – an airship concept. It would transport aid to areas where natural disasters have occurred.

They have benefited from a wealth of international collaboration with some of the world’s leading universities such as MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), The University of Arizona, Tufts University, The University of Pittsburgh, North Carolina School of Mathematics and Science and The University of New South Wales in Australia.

Students have also collaborated with Kohtla-Järve Ahtme Gymnasium, which is a school in Estonia, as well as with some of the world’s leading companies, including Airbus in Germany. Along with all the winners, the King Edward VI School pupils have been invited to attend a special reception event at the home of the Royal Family with The Duke of York (Prince Andrew), who was also present during the final at The Royal Society in London.

Celebrity judges included James May, formerly of Top Gear, co-founder of Lastminute.com Martha Lane Fox and BBC Click’s Kate Russell.

Student Voice, leadership and enrichment co-ordinator at KEVI, Victoria Najafi, said: “Congratulations to all three students, who presented extremely well during what was a very long, however very exciting day.

“The students at the final had the difficult task of presenting to a range of leading experts throughout the day, and it was certainly an experience for Alistair, Jack and Tom to present to HRH The Duke of York. They are now greatly looking forward to going to Buckingham Palace.”

The awards were set up to excite young people about the ever-expanding career possibilities available in the fields of science, engineering and technology, with Teen Tech events taking place across the UK throughout the year.

Maggie Philbin, Teen Tech co-founder and CEO, said: “Every year we are completely astounded by the quality of entries coming through the awards and this year has not disappointed.

“The final at The Royal Society is an amazing opportunity for businesses, academics and celebrities to get a genuine insight into just what is going on in classrooms up and down the country.

“By taking their ideas out of the classroom and putting them face-to-face with industry professionals, we’ve been able to change the way young people think about these subjects and help open their eyes to the real potential of their ideas.”