Monday, 9th July 2018
YOUNG minds have been helping to close the gender gap
YOUNG minds have been helping to close the gender gap by discovering the appliance of science.
Students at Haughton Academy, Darlington, part of The Education Village Academy Trust, joined six schools from across the borough, to take part in the annual Women in STEM event to encourage more girls to access careers within the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematic.
Delivered by Darlington’s Foundation for Jobs, in partnership with Darlington College, the event saw pupils take part in a host of hands-on activities, including science, digital, robotic, smart material and engineering based tasks.
Foundation for Jobs aims to build closer links with business and young people. Its co-ordinator Owen McAteer said: “Despite great progress in recent years there are still far fewer women than men accessing careers in STEM-related disciplines.
“This event aims to challenge the perceptions of what STEM involves and demonstrate to young women the real opportunities that exist in this challenging and varied industry.
“Many firms are facing a skills gap in the future and with youth unemployment so high we need to help young people match their aspirations to the local careers market and help women engage with careers that they may not have considered in the past.”
Organisations involved in the delivery of activities included 3M, Institute of Physics, CPI National Biologics Manufacturing Centre, Durham University (Ogden Trust), Wates Construction, Hitachi Rail and Darlington College.
Haughton Academy teacher of science Nicola Adams said: “This is a great opportunity for our students to see first hand that women are more than capable of doing any scientific-based jobs which may have previously been seen as male focused careers.
“Having the chance to speak to women engineers and scientists already working in STEM industries and getting to experiment with different activities is a great way to build their confidence and give them an idea of what careers may be available to them in the future.”
Haughton student Sophie McMullen, 14, of Darlington, added: “I hadn’t really thought about careers in engineering before, but this event has really opened my eyes to all the different possibilities out there.”