South Yorkshire to Host Region's Largest Skills Event

Almost six thousand pupils and educators from the Yorkshire region are set to take part in this year’s ‘Get up to Speed with STEM’ event, to be held at Magna Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham on Wednesday 20th March.

This highly interactive event showcases the breadth and diversity of careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Manufacturing), bringing employers together to promote and celebrate the very best of what the region has to offer young people.

John Barber, CEO of The Work-wise Foundation (organisers of the event) said: “This is our 14th annual Get up to Speed event and we have more science, technology, engineering, manufacturing and construction experiences than ever to give young people a real-life insight into different roles. There are dozens of interactive activities and challenges planned for the day, with many employers running competitions, demonstrations and practical experiences to really give pupils first-hand experience of their type of work.”

John Barber adds: “Every year we receive some fantastic feedback from schools about how Get up to Speed opens young people’s eyes to the many and varied career opportunities that they could consider.  It also gives them new connections, makes them more familiar with businesses in their area and stimulates conversations and new ideas back at school.  It’s a valuable part of every young person’s education here in South Yorkshire.”

The event starts with a Business Breakfast, themed this year around “Health and Wellbeing for Skills and Productivity”, which will be opened by the Master Cutler, Charles Turner DL, with keynote speaker Jason Brannan, Deputy Director of the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre in Sheffield.  Richard Caborn, former Minister for Sport and Civil Society, will provide closing remarks.


Following the Business Breakfast, young people will be given the chance to see some of the UK’s most exciting STEM innovations and meet the people who design, build and operate them.

Pupils and teachers will also be able to explore the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) through an immersive 360-degree virtual tour, enabling them to understand how the largest general purpose particle detector experiment in the world works. This unique attraction at Get up to Speed is a result of the National Videogame Museum teaming up with the University of Sheffield and CERN in Switzerland.

Also new for 2024, Get up to Speed will feature a McLaren supercar: a volcano yellow 720S.  Other vehicles on show will be from South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue, the National Emergency Services Museum, Yorkshire & Humberside Regional Cyber Crime Unit, plus lots more.

In addition, Stream 7, a video production company based in Sheffield, will be creating GUTS TV, which will run throughout the day, giving pupils the unique opportunity to get involved with the video production and editing process.

Three major competitions will be celebrated on the day including Vulcan to the Sky, AMETEK Land and the High Sheriff’s Building a Better Future Together Challenge which pupils have been busy participating in in the build up to GUTS.

Pupils can also speak to a wide variety of business people, inventors, apprentices, graduates and education providers about future career opportunities.  The Magna visitor attraction will also be open.

Get up to Speed with STEM also gives companies taking part the opportunity to showcase their expertise, highlight career opportunities and current vacancies and meet with other businesses, whilst helping to address the skills gaps across the sectors.

John Barber continues: “This year pupils will be able to immerse themselves in virtual reality, trial the latest digital technologies, as well as learning more about all aspects of the sector from traditional industries to advanced manufacturing and green technologies.  There really is something for everyone.”

This year’s event sponsors include: Gold Sponsors; AESSEAL, CBE+, Sheffield Forgemasters, Worshipful Company of Ironmongers and  Stream 7. Silver Sponsors; Arm, Forged Solutions, The Institution of Engineering and Technology, Hydra Creative, Dragonfly PR and Bronze Sponsors; AMETEK Land, Highlander Computing Solutions, AMG Chrome,  CPH2, Made in Sheffield and the Canal and River Trust.


Since 2010, Get up to Speed, which is championed by employers and organised by The Work-wise Foundation alongside key partners in the private and public sectors, has showcased STEM career opportunities to over 35,000 young people and their families from across the South Yorkshire region and beyond.

Get up to Speed is designed for young people, their families and teachers to see some of the UK's best innovations first-hand, hear from and talk to those involved in their success and learn about the future of the sector and its evolution through technology.

For more details and to book places, go to





Marina Wood or Courtney Chandler: / tel 0114 349 5341.



The Work-wise Foundation 

The Work-wise Foundation is an employer-led charity which supports the development of young people so they have the knowledge, skills, aptitude and opportunities for employment within South Yorkshire and beyond.

The Foundation helps the private sector take the lead in preparing young people for employment and rewarding careers. We do this by establishing links, developing programmes on training and practical guidance, and connecting employers with their future employees.

Established in 2011 as an employer-led initiative for engineering, manufacturing and other related sectors, the organisation supports the development of young people, so they have the knowledge, skills, aptitude and opportunities for employment within the Sheffield City Region. 

Now, annually the team delivers more than 10,000 work-related experiences for young people in South Yorkshire through a wide range of programmes. These include, the Summer Academy, Employability Academies and What Employers Want events, North Star Science School, Sector Routeways into Engineering & Manufacturing, STEMfest and its flagship event, Get up to Speed with STEM.