In October half-term, Stemettes ran October Explore 2021. Running from 26th – 29th October 2021, the virtual event was open to girls and non-binary people aged 7-25. Participants were able to interact with STEM role models from industry, academia and entrepreneurship. Over the four days, Stemettes partnered with Form3, Department for Transport and Anglo American.
This morning #OctoberExplore Junior @Stemettes (ages 7-11) will be doing an activity with Web Engineer at Spotify Winsome Yuen and hearing about her journey into STEM.#GirlsInSTEM pic.twitter.com/QT2d3xitWj
— Stemettes ® ?★ # + (@Stemettes) October 26, 2021
The programme consisted of three streams: Junior (aged 7-11); Connect (aged 12-15); and Academy (aged 16-21). The Junior and Connect participants had morning role model sessions, participating in Q&As, activities, and panel talks. The Academy stream worked towards their Cisco Cyber qualification.
Afternoon sessions allowed Connect and Academy streams to network with role models, and Connect took part in a group project. All three streams together for a downtime activity session and Instagram Live. The Instagram Lives were also open to the wider public. On the final day of the programme, participants joined a Showcase to share what they had learnt and been working on during the week.
— Stemettes ® ?★ # + (@Stemettes) October 29, 2021
Participants from all streams were asked to rate their experience. The overall rating of the programme was 8.58 out of 10.
- 96% of participants felt their knowledge of STEM increased
- 92% of participants felt that their perception of STEM increased
- 92% of participants felt their awareness of STEM career options increased
Participants across all streams said that meeting role models and getting advice was their favourite part. Academy also named exploring cybersecurity as a highlight, with Junior saying completing activities was their favourite bit. For Connect, they found the best bit was meeting like-minded people and working on the project together.
“I loved how it allowed me to really think creatively and explore so many vast ideas into cybersecurity. It was nice to have a break from routine and be able to really enjoy learning about something I really enjoy.” – Academy Participant
“I learnt many new things and got the chance to interact wit people from all over the world” – Connect Participant
The biggest thing participants saw an increase in through the programme was their STEM network. They thought that increased confidence was an unexpected benefit of the programme, alongside discovering previously unknown STEM career paths.
There were 50% of participants who felt that the programme reaffirmed their pre-existing interest in pursuing a career in STEM, and 27% now want to pursue a career in STEM who hadn’t before the programme began.
“I really want to be a scientist because I find it quite interesting especially rocks and diseases.” – Junior Participant
Thank you to all the volunteers and STEMazing role models who took part.
Catch up on the Instagram Live sessions from October Explore over on our Instagram!