Young Women into STEM Taster Day

16 December 2016 | College News, Engineering, Automotive & Marine, English & Maths, Science

Young Women into STEM - student practices bricklaying

More than 70 female students were given the chance to learn that science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) is not just for the boys. City College Plymouth’s ‘Young Women into STEM Taster Day’ welcomed girls from seven schools across Devon and Cornwall.

The annual event gave the year nine students the opportunity to try their hand at a range of practical STEM workshops. This year’s activities ranged from forensic science, media and an introduction to computer-aided design, to workshops on the electrical, bricklaying and automotive trades.

With a UK predicted skills shortage of 93,000 by 2020 in related industries, STEM is a local and national priority. Around 72% of businesses rely on people with STEM skills, but of those working in core STEM occupations, only 21% are women.

City College is leading the way locally with the opening of its £13million state-of-the-art Regional Centre of Excellence for STEM, in autumn 2017. The Centre is set to revolutionise the way subjects are taught, offering a flexible environment that simulates ‘real work’ scenarios with industry-standard workshops, laboratories and studios equipped with high-tech resources to support a broader and more relevant STEM curriculum. Employers have been involved at every stage, helping to develop the curriculum so that the College delivers work-ready youngsters who are trained in the high-tech skills that Plymouth businesses want.

Jo Williams, Youth Liaison Officer at the College, said: “Our industry-standard facilities provide the perfect backdrop for this annual event. The girls can experience STEM activities whilst also having fun and learning new skills, such as how to carry out winter safety checks on cars and change a tyre. This hands-on experience of what this ever-growing industry can offer, comes at a time when they are planning their future careers. Young women in Plymouth have a huge amount to offer – and STEM education for all is the first step to unlocking it.”

Claire John, STEM Co-ordinator at Plymstock School, said: “The girls all had a great day, I even heard one say ‘this is so fun, can we stay here forever? The whole day was a brilliant insight into potential careers in the STEM industry and gave the girls an opportunity to see the many different career paths they could take, both in a vocational or academic setting, but all with STEM at the heart.”

For those interested in STEM based courses available at the College,  the College is hosting an Open Day on Saturday 29 April, 10.00am to 1.00pm, at Kings Road. To find out more, please visit our events page or call 01752 305300.

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