The Chelsea Foundation’s education and innovation team hosted the second annual Tech Slam – a one-day sports and technology event - at Stamford Bridge last week.
The event for 14-16 year olds is designed to give young people the opportunity to try their hand at technology used in sport, and understand the impact STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects play within a football club.
Foundation head of education Matt Mead said: ‘The day sees the participants get involved in Virtual Reality (VR), computer, and material sciences, interactive computer-based coding activities and a primer on tech-driven sports and analytics, as well as robot football and using robotics in music.
‘They’re also exposed to real technology companies like Uber and Aon, as well as retailers like GAP that are harnessing the potential of technology within their businesses to do more for their customers.
‘It’s all about inspiring young people to pursue a career in technology that goes beyond the latest smartphone, as well as showing them the various pathways into sports through technology.’
The Tech Slam was run in partnership with three US-based organisations – The Hidden Genius Project, TEAM Inc and Oakland Natives Give Back, which are all Oakland-based companies that support and mentor young people in tech and sport and into further education.
The Hidden Genius Projects executive director, Brandon Nicholson Ph.D. said: ‘The Chelsea Foundation was the first one we partnered with and we are so fortunate to have found this relationship, as it’s the platinum of foundations across football teams.
‘They really care about young people and want to inspire the next generation of sporting professionals. We’re both about using young people’s passion for professional sports to show them that there are so many others ways to make a career in sports that doesn’t involve being on a pitch or a field.
‘And we’ve taken a lot away from our partnership, also; robot football was developed at Chelsea Foundation and we use it in sessions in the US and the kids love it.’
Mead added: ‘The partnership with these companies shows that Tech Slam is so much more than technology, it’s also showing the boys the power of building good relationships within business and how that’s just as important as being technically brilliant in their field.’
Find out more about the Chelsea Foundation’s Education team.