jcb academy open day

Career opportunities in engineering took centre stage when The JCB Academy welcomed young people from across Staffordshire for its annual open day.

More than 700 families visited the historic Rocester school with a view to applying for places at the most oversubscribed school in the county, and youngsters interested in STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths - pathways were shown just how many career opportunities could be accessed through the school’s multitude of business connections. 

Dozens of apprentices from the school’s sponsor, digger giant JCB, talked to potential students about engineering and business careers and were joined by high profile employers who partner with the Academy on curriculum challenges and apprenticeships.  Businesses included: Rolls Royce, National Grid, Ultra PMES, Parker Hannifin, Bosch Rexroth, Hitachi Energy, Hex Group and Alton Towers. 

One of the things that really sets us apart is our unique relationship with JCB and many high-profile employers across our region. These connections are invaluable to our students as they progress from education into their careers.

Jenny McGuirk | JCB Academy Principal

The JCB Academy Principal Mrs Jenny McGuirk continued, saying: “It was fantastic to welcome hundreds of families to the Open Day. We take real pride in showcasing all that is great about The JCB Academy from the all-round educational experience to the amazing engineering and technology opportunities that our students have."

JCB Senior Early Career Scheme Leader, and former JCB Academy student, Holly Broadhurst, added: “I know first-hand what a great educational experience young people get at the Academy and the brilliant career paths it can lead to. Many of our apprentices are also former pupils and they love talking to the next generation and sharing their passion for practical and professional opportunities at JCB.”

Young people considering applying to study were treated to guided tours of the historic 18th Century former cotton mill as well as demonstrations of exciting aspects of the curriculum including robot building and programming, 3D printing, lathe workshops and a Caterham car display which is being built by students.

The JCB Academy is a non-selective school which welcomes students from Year 9 onwards within an 18-mile radius – covering areas such as the Staffordshire Moorlands, Uttoxeter, Burton, Stoke-on-Trent, Stafford and Stone.

In Year 9 there are three applicants for every one of the 132 available places. Applications through the JCB website close at the end of January and places are awarded by random allocation. Successful applicants are informed on March 1st, 2023.  

Students and parents eligible for September 2023 admission to The JCB Academy are welcome to attend a guided tour. To register visit