Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare today announced that the Federal Government would provide an additional $1.1 million to continue the successful F1 in Schools program.
The F1 in Schools program is an international competition which encourages high school students to design, develop and build futuristic model Formula One race cars.
Students from 38 countries participate in the competition.
Australian schools have had great success in this program last year with the team from Brooks High School in Tasmania winning the World Championship in Kuala Lumpur.
As part of the Australian Grand Prix, students participating in the program showcased their cars and their racing skills on a purpose-built track in Melbourne.
Mr Clare said the program encouraged students to think about a career in engineering and manufacturing.
"Australia needs more engineers and the Defence industry is no exception," Mr Clare said.
"Over the next fifteen years we're replacing about 85 per cent of our Defence equipment and a lot of that work will be done in Australia.
"The next big mountain we have to climb is building the next generation of submarines and we need engineers to get that job done.
"This program puts Australian students in the fast lane towards a career in engineering.
"After completing the F1 in Schools Challenge, 64 per cent of boys and 35 per cent of girls changed their school subjects to science, technology, engineering and maths subjects."
The Federal Government is also co-sponsoring the 'Driving Science, Driving the Future' skills forum held at this year's Grand Prix which showcases career opportunities in science and engineering.
The $1.1 million in funding is over three years and will be provided to Re-Engineering Australia Foundation (REA), which manages the F1 in Schools Technology Challenge.
Korena Flanagan 02 6277 7290