The below article featured in CQ News, Mackay Daily Mercury and the Courier Mail.
‘Research shows that STEM industry engagement is too often focused on high school students’
By Janessa Ekert
Central Queensland students got hands-on with Science, Technology, Engineering and Math as they learned pathways to a diverse career in the resources and energy sector.
Through the Bright Future STEM program, hundreds of children from Dysart, Moranbah and Moranbah East primary schools learned how studying STEM subjects could unlock a wide range of future job opportunities.
The program, delivered by peak industry employer Australian Resources and Energy Group AMMA, partnered with Thiess and Anglo American to successfully deliver the interactive engagement initiative.
“Research shows that STEM industry engagement is too often focused on high school students – a point at which it may be too late as they’ve already made decisions about the subjects they enjoy,” AMMA operations director Tara Diamond said.
This initiative, Ms Diamond said, engaged children in STEM subjects at an early age and piqued their interest in the diversity of jobs that flow on.
“The program is all about engaging schoolkids on STEM areas of study and building awareness of the diverse careers that can be found within the resources and energy industry,” she said.
“In Central Queensland the resources and energy industry is a key contributor to jobs and the economy – it was great to build further awareness and understanding of the sector, and highlight the rewarding careers unlocked by studying STEM.”
Moranbah State School students Layla White, Sherriah Sterritt and Branden Smallhorn making light work of the ‘snap circuit’ activity, learning how to put together an electrical circuit by linking the correct pieces to a battery pack, which makes a circuit to create light and power a fan.
Through the program, that ran from March 22 to 26, students enjoyed a series of interactive and stimulating activities that included robotics, snap circuits, engineering challenges and virtual reality headsets with a 360-degree view of mining and oil and gas operations.
“In particular, the female industry STEM role models from Thiess and Anglo American play a critical role in the program to help breakdown gender stereotypes and inspire young girls to follow a passion for STEM,” Ms Diamond said.
Moranbah East State School students experiencing what it’s like to work in an underground mine, through 360-degree, real life virtual reality headsets.
“Through the program, students learn about the array of career pathways and hear first-hand from the role models about their own pathways and why they love working in the sector.”