Date(s) - March 5 2020
All Day

The Derby Conference Centre

Platinum Sponsors                                                                                                       Trophy Sponsor


School Prize Sponsor

Event and School Sponsor  : Atkins 

Event Sponsors :   Balfour Beatty, Bombardier, Derby College, DRES, East Midlands Railway, iepeople, Learning Unlimited, Loram, Network Rail, Pauley Interactive, RAIB, TracsisTUV Rheinland and University of Derby                                                             

with special thanks to Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy for their support


RFM members are needed to support and sponsor our flagship schools engagement event iRail. Now in its 12th year and nationally recognised as one of the industries leading schools engagement programmes iRail is vitally important if we want to ensure we have a pipeline of young people with the right qualifications, qualities and interest in working in our sector. Prior to the iRail Challenge day the majority of schools will have benefitted from a full day of rail related activity in school. These activities cover the whole year 9 (aged 14) year group and following this schools select a team to represent them for the iRail Challenge. We anticipate 14-15 schools from across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire being involved. The iRail Challenge Day has several components.

Industry Visits 

The iRail Challenge Day kicks off with schools arriving at the main venue to be briefed followed by two site visits to see the industry in action.

College and University Students ‘Drop In Session’

Whilst the pupils are on their site visits college and university students are invited to drop in to meet the  employers present and to find out a bit more about potential career opportunities available in the sector. This is a great way for you to make initial contact with potential apprentices and graduates.

iRail STEM Challenge

On their return the schools are set a Science Technology Engineering Maths (STEM) Challenge to work on in their school teams. The solutions are judged by a panel of experts and the winners and runners up each receive school and individual participation prizes.

Teacher Briefing Session

Whilst the school teams are working on the challenge teachers benefit from an ‘Insight into Rail Careers’ briefing provided by a cross section of recent apprentices/graduates from local companies. These short case studies serve to ‘open the eyes’ of these key influencers of young people when it comes to career choices.

How can employers get involved?

Companies can get involved on the day by sponsoring a stand and coming along to provide practical support during the STEM challenge. Company representatives act as a sounding board for pupils’ ideas and also have the opportunity to chat about their company, what it does and potential careers. We also aim to provide each school team with a young engineer as a mentor to work with them on the challenge. This is a fantastic opportunity not just to support young people but also to develop your own staff. Involvement also supports your CSR Policies and helps meet the criteria for schools engagement that now appear in many tendering opportunities.

Several types of sponsorship packages are available to suit a range of budgets and commitment e.g. individual schools, event sponsor (with stand) and prizes –  for details contact or see here  iRail Sponsorship

Organisations that wish to sponsor a stand and pay by credit card can do so by using the booking system below.


Bookings are closed for this event.

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