YOUNG engineers from across Oxfordshire were celebrated during a ceremony at Abingdon and Witney college.

The awards, presented by the High Sheriff of Oxfordshire Mark Beard, encouraged young people to work towards engineering design solutions which will help communities achieve net zero carbon emissions.

Sydnie Dougan, who attends Didcot Girls School and won the Year 10 & 11 Award with an instrument that provides efficient monitoring for classroom air quality, said: “It was such a lovely event celebrating so many inspiring, incredible young people and I am extremely honoured, proud and thankful to have been involved and additionally for the recognition of my work.

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“The process of creating my CO2 monitor taught me so much and has only furthered my passion for engineering, especially for the problem-solving and learning opportunities that constantly comes alongside it.  

“The advice I'd give to aspiring female engineers, and what I try to stick to myself, is to speak up against bias and fight for what you believe in- your voice matters. To always work hard so you can continually put your best foot forward. 

"And to just keep breaking down as many barriers as possible, no matter what setbacks you face, because we are intelligent, powerful, and just as capable as anybody else- no matter the preconceptions”.

A spokesperson for the college said: “Huge congratulations to all of the winners and runners up, and a massive thank you to Richard Dick and Lucy Group for their generous prizes to the students and their schools and colleges.

“We'd also like to thank High Sheriff Mark Beard, Abingdon Mayor Andy Foulsham, and Vice Lord Lieutenant Brian Buchan for their support.”

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The full list of winners is as follows:

Year 12 & 13 Award

Abdullah Abbasi, Abingdon & Witney College

Year 10 & 11 Award

Sydnie Dougan, Didcot Girls School

Year 8 & 9 Award

Zoe Forrester, Faringdon Community College

Team Award

Gosford Hill School

Overall Winner Sydnie Dougan, Didcot Girls School

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This story was written by Anna Colivicchi, she joined the team this year and covers health stories for the Oxfordshire papers. 

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