Gatwick announced as headline sponsor of Sussex Science fairs


  • Gatwick to sponsor both Crawley STEMfest and Big Bang Fair South East
  • Part of airport’s strategy to help boost local employment opportunities and skills development
  • Fairs expected to attract thousands of students and teachers from across the region

Gatwick Airport is to take over as the headline sponsors of two of the most important events for schools and colleges in the region – the 2017 Crawley STEMfest and the Big Bang Fair South East.

The airport, which employs over 30,000 people on site and in related activities, has been involved with the events since their inception in 2012 as part of its strategy to help boost local employment opportunities and skills development.

Crawley STEMfest takes place in May and June each year in schools and colleges and in the community, while the Big Bang Fair South East, which will be held at the South of England Showground on 28th June 2017, is expected to attract 9,000 students and their teachers from more than 150 schools and colleges throughout the region.

Alison Addy, Gatwick’s Head of Community Engagement, said: “These events create a stimulating environment that brings schools topics to life and gets young people interested in science, technology, engineering and maths by showing how they translate into real life.

“We are delighted to be the headline sponsors for Crawley STEMfest 2017 and the Big Bang Fair South East because it is important that we forge and strengthen links with young people in the region and their teachers.

“Like many other businesses in the area, we need a pipeline of employees to take on jobs that may not even exist today.”

STEM Sussex Project Manager Jo McKinney-Green said: “We are really pleased to have Gatwick on board as our headline sponsors for 2017. Without their help and support, as well as the support of all our other sponsors, these important events could not take place.

“There are many highly-skilled jobs in and around the airport, and at the moment large numbers of people commute to them from other parts of the region. Crawley STEMfest and the Big Bang are an exciting and inspiring way of making young people and their teachers aware of the training and careers opportunities available locally.”

This follows the report, recently published by Oxford Economics, showing that Gatwick could support an extra 13,000 new jobs by 2025 with its existing runway – and lift its total contribution to the national economy to £6.5 billion, if passenger numbers grow by around 20% from 43 million a year today."

Both Crawley STEMfest and the Big Bang Fair South East are organised by STEM Sussex, the STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) outreach support department of the University of Brighton, in conjunction with Crawley Borough Council and Central Sussex College.

About London Gatwick

Gatwick Airport is the UK’s second largest airport and the most efficient single-runway airport in the world. It serves more than 228 destinations in 74 countries for 45 million passengers a year on short and long-haul point-to-point services. It is also a major economic driver for the UK contributing £5.3 billion to national GDP and generating 85,000 jobs nationally, with around 24,000 on the wider airport campus alone. The airport is south of Central London with excellent public transport links, including the Gatwick Express, and is part of the Oyster contactless payment network. Gatwick Airport is owned by a group of international investment funds, of which Global Infrastructure Partners is the largest shareholder.

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