The Marine Engineering Pathway programme is a Sea Cadets project delivered in partnership with Seafarers UK. It provides schools with relatable workshop-type, taster sessions that give students a more practical understanding of the world of engineering.

Through specially designed lessons young people are encouraged to think more about choosing engineering compatible GCSEs, and inspired to develop a career focus on engineering, and in particular marine engineering.

Sea Cadets is working with schools across the UK to offer a unique STEM-linked opportunity for Key Stage 3 pupils to learn basic engineering principles, and to get hands-on with engines. As part of the delivery, the Marine Engineering Pathway team can supply a purpose-built engineering ‘pod’ (a mobile trailer with all sorts of equipment and engines). This will give pupils practical experience with real-life engines, further enhancing their learning experience.


The MEP workshops support the PSHE and science curricula for England, Wales and Scotland and are aimed at pupils in KS3

The workshop focusses on buoyancy, exploring some of the scientific principles behind displacement, density, Newton’s 3rd Law and Archimedes Principle. In teams, pupils are tasked with designing and building a ship which is stable in the water while carrying as much cargo as possible. This practical task concludes in the pupils testing their ships and discovering which team has succeeded in carrying the most cargo whilst staying afloat!



per cent of pupils find MEP sessions 'interesting'


per cent of pupils 'would like to do more marine engineering activities'


per cent of teachers reported that the session leader was interesting and knowledgable



“I really loved the workshop. I was thinking of a career in engineering, but didn’t think about the marine side. I found it interesting. It sounds like you can be really involved, and enjoy different experiences, which I like.”

Eimaan, Year 8


After the session

We've found that pupil knowledge of marine engineering and careers, along with knowledge of the Sea Cadets increased dramatically (by approximately 40%) following the workshop.

Teacher knowledge of marine engineering, careers, and the Sea Cadets increased significantly following the workshop. The most striking increase was for teachers reporting that they ‘knew a lot’ about marine engineering, and marine engineering careers (74% respectively) following the session. Teachers’ knowledge of the Sea Cadets increased by over 50%.

The reach of MEP

So far we’ve reached 18,000 students, and are on track to meet our target of 37,500 by April 2022.

According to a survey carried out by Sea Cadets, 16% of students wanted to take triple science at GCSE, compared to 5% before the sessions. And 36% said they planned to study engineering; before the sessions, just over a quarter said the same.

Students enjoyed the balance between theory and practical application and engaged well with the process, developing their self-confidence, communication, problem-solving and teamwork skills”.

Andy Troup, Year Eight Tutor and Head of Science


Want to know more?

If you have any questions or would like to find out more, get in touch with the MEP team.

Send an email

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