By Rachael McCullough
In2science hosted a dynamic Industry-Schools Partnerships Forum at The University of Melbourne on Thursday 13th of September. With attendees from Government, STEM industry, universities, and schools across the Melbourne area, the forum was testament to the growing interest in collaborative STEM partnerships between schools and industry.
In2science is extremely proud of the outstanding young university students who volunteer to mentor high school science and maths students. Their enthusiasm is infectious and the talent and abilities they bring to the program are the reason In2science has such a positive impact on all who participate. In this issue we profile three of our wonderful mentors. Please allow us to introduce you to Chloe, Dalton and Lachlan.
Strengthening Industry partnerships is a priority for both Schools and Universities. Students of all ages benefit significantly from making connections between their learning and the workplace.
On a cold and windy morning in late August, In2science mentors gained valuable advice on planning a career in STEM, resumé preparation and interview tips at a workshop hosted by Ericsson.
In2science is proud to share two new inside views of our online eMentoring program for regional schools. The program offers a valuable opportunity for students to connect with volunteer university students, who help guide and inspire them along their STEM pathway.
In the first eMentoring case study video (above), we hear about the implementation and success of the program at Catholic College Wodonga (CCW) and how such programs help to remove the distance barrier for young people in regional Victoria. CCW signed up as an In2science partner school in late 2017, to provide opportunities for their science students to extend their learning and expand their career awareness.
On Thursday 13 September 2018, In2science will host a free forum on industry-school partnerships in STEM education. We invite you to join us to hear from leaders in industry, education and government, and to share your ideas and experiences.
In this article, we explore the emergence of such partnerships as a priority in STEM education policy and the benefits that they can provide to schools, students and industry alike. Read More
More Victorian secondary school students from regional and rural backgrounds are reaping the benefits of connecting with university student eMentors as In2science expands its reach and forges new partnerships with regional schools. Through weekly online interactions, students who would otherwise be disadvantaged by geographical isolation or limited access to resources, discover their love of science and maths.
The Victorian Department of Education and Training recently featured the transformative experience of In2science eMentees from regional partner school Maffra Secondary College in its Stories from the Education State series. “Student mentoring takes education to the next level” emphasised how programs like In2science utilise funding from the Department to ensure that Victoria remains the Education State. Maffra SC student, Charlotte was effusive in her praise for the program, “The In2science program has been an amazing help for me in and outside of school, and I would encourage anyone who loves STEM to try it and see what it can offer.”
Robyn Gamble, In2science eMentoring Coordinator, recently had the pleasure of meeting with staff and students at some of our new regional partner schools. In a jam-packed itinerary, Robyn presented a Partner School certificate to an eMentoring student from Catholic College Wodonga, as well a Partner School Certificate to the students and staff at Sacred Heart College in Yarrawonga, where Principal Lew Nagle sang the praises of In2science, delineating the opportunities the program provides their students to ignite their passion for STEM, thereby inspiring them to pursue a STEM-based career. A short drive down the highway and Robyn was warmly welcomed by Tiffany Chandler, from one of In2science’s newest partner schools, Notre Dame College in Shepparton. With its combination of passionate teachers, outstanding new science facilities, and the new In2science partnership, it is evident that Notre Dame College students are afforded every opportunity to explore science and the rewarding STEM-based careers that can follow.
Interested in hosting a mentor? Click here!
Semester 1, 2018 saw 129 In2science mentors from La Trobe University, RMIT University, Swinburne University of Technology and The University of Melbourne continue the proud In2science tradition of inspiring secondary school students to continue studying STEM subjects and aspire to STEM-based careers.
In doing so, In2science mentors volunteered a total of 1169 hours to help 1780 high school students across 39 partner schools.
Consistent with past appraisals, feedback from students, teachers and mentors reflected the overwhelmingly positive impact the program has on all who participate.
“He showed us different parts of what part science plays in everyday life. It helped me to understand where science hides even if you don’t know it’s there.” – Yr 8 student, Rowville SC
“Lachlan was amazing with the students. He had an ability to quickly build rapport with students, share life experience, share tertiary knowledge and engage all at the same time. Lachlan helped all students in the class, and helped build curiosity in science.” – Teacher, Templestowe College
The majority of teachers (88%) noticed that certain students engaged more in the lesson when a mentor was present, while the same percentage also agreed that the mentor was a good role model for the students, sharing their passion, experience and knowledge of STEM career pathways. Furthermore, by hosting a mentor, 75% of teachers gained the capacity to undertake additional activities in the classroom, while 78% noted that the mentor contributed specialised subject knowledge and real-life examples. This positive teacher feedback is a testament to the high calibre of the mentors recruited to participate in the program.
“Bastien showed great initiative and was very proactive in assisting students and extending them beyond what I had planned, which was fantastic.” – Teacher, Glenroy SC
Indeed, the benefits of the program extend beyond the positive impacts experienced by students and teachers, as mentors also enjoy opportunities to accrue the ‘soft skills’ that will ensure they stand out in an ever more competitive employment market. Amongst mentors, 98% agreed that their participation in In2science enabled development of skills they will use in the future.
“This was one of the best experiences of my uni degree thus far! Can’t wait to do it again next semester.” – Lily Martin, Swinburne University of Technology student and mentor at Auburn High School
Most importantly, this semester saw the In2science program continue to achieve its aims of increasing student engagement in STEM and building students’ aspirations for STEM-based careers. These outcomes were especially strong for those students who mentors were able to work closely with over the course of the semester.
By Annabel Khamly
The mentors at In2science share the common traits of studying in the field of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and having a passion for the scientific world. Other than this, mentors differ from one another immensely.
Each student has a different motivation for applying for In2science. Often, mentors hope to inspire youth by sharing their love for STEM, or some want to voice their diverse journeys to tertiary education. Many have had volunteering experience before and want to continue, and others are seeking opportunities to give back to the community.
In2science also aims to help the mentors in their professional development, giving them a platform to improve their communication, time-management and interpersonal skills. This reciprocation of benefits is what makes In2science such a great experience for both mentor and mentee.
Take a look at some of the 2018 mentors’ thoughts in the video above!
Annabel made this video during her internship with In2science, as part of her Bachelor of Science degree at The University of Melbourne. Congratulations Annabel and all the best for your future endeavours!