Frequently Asked Questions
What is Amazon Future Engineer?Amazon Future Engineer is a childhood-to-career programme aimed at inspiring and educating students from lower-income backgrounds to try computer science and coding. Here’s how:
For Primary school children:
Amazon Future Engineer will enable ten thousand primary school pupils in the UK to take part in robotics workshops at Amazon fulfilment centres over the next two years, learning to program robots which use similar technology to what is used by Amazon to fulfil customer orders. The workshops, developed in collaboration with Fire Tech, are designed to give children first-hand experience of how technology works in the real world and have been accredited by the British Science Association.
Amazon has also collaborated in creating Hour of Code: Dance Party, an interactive dance-themed online coding tutorial together with non-profit organisation Code.org, featuring songs from leading.
Amazon is working with education charity Teach First to support the recruitment and training of 50 secondary school computer science teachers and to support the development of over 200 Teach First Careers Leaders. The computer science teachers will be placed in schools serving lower-income communities. The teachers will then have the opportunity to embark on a two-week paid work experience placement at Amazon. Careers Leaders and computer science students will also have the opportunity to visit Amazon on work insight days.
For students wishing to pursue computer sciences in higher education, Amazon is funding 120 apprenticeships in software development engineering, automation and advanced mechatronics, enabling a diverse range of applicants to enter the computer science field. Participants will benefit from on-the-job work experience and classroom-based learning.
Amazon is also funding 20 bursaries for students studying computer science at four UK universities, enabling students from lower-income backgrounds to pursue technology careers. The universities are located in cities where Amazon has a Development Centre or corporate office and are Kings College London, Edinburgh and Cambridge.
How do I get involved in Amazon Future Engineer?Students, university graduates and primary school teachers can apply to different stages of the Amazon Future Engineer programme. To see if Amazon Future Engineer is a fit for you, your school or your students, please visit the programme pages of the Amazon Future Engineer website.
Why is Amazon launching Amazon Future Engineer?We’re committed to helping young people – particularly those from lower-income backgrounds – to develop and learn computer science skills so they have equal opportunities in the future world of work. By giving students and teachers the chance to access computer science skills training we believe Amazon Future Engineer can help close the computer science skills gap. We firmly believe that household income should not define how well a child does at school. Amazon Future Engineer launched in the US in 2018 and the UK launch is the first international expansion of the programme.
How are you ensuring the programme reaches children from lower-income communities?The elements of the programme target students from lower-income communities as follows:
Primary robotics workshops – Targets students from lower-income communities by using the UK government’s Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index to identify areas which have a high proportion of children living in deprived areas. This measure will be used to identify the schools we promote the workshops to in our marketing and outreach.
Secondary Teach First – Targets lower-income students as Teach First places their trainee teachers in schools in these areas. Teach First uses the UK Government’s Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index to identify schools.
Bursaries – In the UK, bursaries are specifically for lower-income students. The universities set the specific criteria of which students can apply, based on household income i.e. household income must be below a certain level.
Apprenticeships – Whilst we are unable to limit apprenticeships to specific demographic groups, we are promoting the programme to colleges in lower-income areas.
How have you selected some of the schools you are working with?Any primary school can apply to attend our robotics workshops however we prioritise schools based in low-income communities. These will run at nine of our fulfilment centres across the UK and schools can visit the programme pages on the Amazon Future Engineer website to apply. Schools that will benefit from Teach First computer science teachers will be managed through our charity partner Teach First, which focuses on placing teachers in schools that serve low-income communities. Graduates interested in applying to be a Teach First computer science teacher can find out more by visiting the programme pages of the Amazon Future Engineer website.
How does Amazon Future Engineer fit into Amazon’s larger community engagement investments?Amazon has long been committed to communities where our employees live and work and we focus on building long-term, innovative, and high impact programmes that leverage Amazon’s unique assets and culture. We want all children and young adults to have the resources and skills to build their best future. We concentrate on “right now needs” – via programmes that address hunger, homelessness, and disaster relief efforts – as well as programmes like Amazon Future Engineer, designed to inspire and excite children and young adults from lower income communities to pursue careers in the rapidly growing field of computer science. We believe we are uniquely positioned to inspire and educate students from these communities across the UK to try computer science and coding, and pursue a career in this field.
For more on Amazon’s community investments, check out our www.aboutamazon.co.uk.