Agile and ambitious Flinders students upcycle old petrol vehicle
“This project has taught me to be an agile thinker and to come up with innovative ideas to solve problems. It has also taught me how to engage in real issues of sustainability and future power sources. I have also learnt about mentoring partnerships with representatives from local Sunshine Coast businesses,” says Year 12 Matthew Flinders Anglican College student Josh Poulton
Matthew Flinders Anglican College began upcycling an old petrol vehicle into an electric car of the future in October 2020. Nine Year 12 students and three Year 11 students began the restoration after Flinders introduced the project into the Senior Industrial Technology Skills curriculum. The College also offered it as a co-curricular technology project and invited students, staff, parents and community members to get involved.
The group of Flinders students who have committed their time to providing a full conversion continue to work on the project during lesson time weekly. Industrial Technology students have been mentored by local mechanics who visited the College in the early days of the project, to help with the initial planning and innovation stages.
Students are working to replace the vehicle’s petrol engine with an electric motor and battery. Once completed, the new electric vehicle will be able to be charged using the school’s own solar panels.
This multifaceted project has drawn on the resources of many subject areas at Matthew Flinders Anglican College, allowing students of diverse backgrounds and interests to contribute to the many different economic, business, design, production and marketing tasks associated with the restoration.
It has been recognised that the enrichment of collaboration between students, design and technology staff and community members is a stark highlight of the project so far.
Students interested in engineering and industry have been working on mechanical restoration; students interested in graphic design are working with the latest computer design technologies to create logos, badges and finished paint effects; and, there are students working behind the scenes running marketing campaigns for sponsorship and working with the College’s finance team on budgeting and purchasing.
This project has taught me to be an agile thinker and to come up with innovative ideas to solve problems. It has also taught me how to engage in real issues of sustainability and future power sources. I have also learnt about mentoring partnerships with representatives from local Sunshine Coast businesses.
A highlight of the project for me has been realising the electric vehicle project has provided the perfect testing ground for me to practise new skills.
Upon completion, we are hoping to get the new electric vehicle roadworthy compliant and registered. We are also brainstorming ideas for how the new vehicle might be implemented into the school community. There has been talk about using it as a marketing vehicle for the College, using it as a coffee van for sporting events or simply selling it and then starting another project.
This project enables us as students at Flinders to have ownership over our learning. It’s also an opportunity for us to employ 21st century skills such as creativity, collaboration and critical thinking, which we can then apply to solve any problem in learning and life.
It is early days, but it is exciting to be a part of a student and staff team. We are working effectively together, and everyone is engaged and eager to show pride in their work.
Editor’s note: To find out more about Matthew Flinders Anglican College’s student projects, visit the College’s website.Jump to next article