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Sarah Longhurst

Work experience with an eMentor – an amazing opportunity!

By News, Profiles

In2science provides eMentoring sessions to students in regional Victoria to encourage engagement with STEM learning in high school and beyond. Students in these areas often have reduced learning opportunities, however this was not the case for eMentee Ashlee, a year 10 student at Galen Catholic College in Wangaratta. Ashlee was given an amazing opportunity by her eMentor Georgia, a PhD student at The University of Melbourne. Georgia organised for Ashlee to undertake work experience alongside her as she undertook research for her PhD project at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health in Parkville.

Georgia’s PhD project is titled ‘Utilising stem cells to model Amytrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)’. ALS is a disease of the brain and spinal cord that causes a progressive loss of muscle control and currently has no cure. While undertaking her work experience, Ashlee was able to assist Georgia in conducting experiments as part of this vital research.

Ashlee experienced what it is like working in a lab first-hand and learnt various laboratory techniques, an opportunity that she may not have otherwise had without the relationship cultivated and nurtured during In2science eMentoring sessions. “It was an absolute pleasure having her in the lab and she took to the techniques so incredibly well,” said Georgia. “An absolute super star!”

In2science is proud of the small role we played in connecting Ashlee, a student fascinated by neuroscience, and Georgia though our hugely successful eMentoring program. Mentor and mentee have been meeting once a week to talk all things neuroscience for two semesters and have built a lasting friendship during that time.

“Georgia is more than my mentor, she is my biggest inspiration, my role model, and my idol,” says Ashlee. “This experience was amazing. I learned an unimaginable amount and am now considering a career in medical research more than ever.”

If you think eMentoring could benefit students like Ashlee from your school, contact In2science today!


Overcoming setbacks – a powerful PD!

By Events, News

In2science was thrilled to partner with Sarah Coonan and Taylor Clark from Teach for Australia to deliver a professional development workshop entitled “Resilience and Overcoming Setbacks” on Tuesday September 13. Hosted by Swinburne University of Technology, the workshop gave our mentors tools to help them tackle setbacks, and to recognise they do not have to face challenges alone.

After a grounding Acknowledgement of Country, the workshop began with a fun activity highlighting the diversity of participants. We discovered that the audience contained both early birds and night owls, coffee and non-coffee drinkers, and, on a more serious note, people that were the first in their family to go to university. This activity highlighted the fact that anyone can be met with setbacks, regardless of their background or behaviour.

Sarah and Taylor then stepped the mentors through a self-reflection exercise that involved remembering a past setback or failure. Through exploring previous challenges, they helped mentors identify who to go to for support, and consider what they learnt from the experience. Sarah and Taylor emphasised that resilience is all about getting support and adapting to challenges, rather than going it alone and risk breaking down. Their workshop helped mentors develop the skills needed to face obstacles head-on and not be afraid of failure. In2science thanks Sarah and Taylor from Teach for Australia for this enlightening and empowering workshop.







Deakin University joins In2science!

By News

Secondary students in Geelong and throughout Victoria’s south-west will now have access to passionate and enthusiastic STEM mentors with Deakin University now part of the highly successful mentoring program In2science.

Deakin University joins current In2science partners, La Trobe University, The University of Melbourne, RMIT University and Swinburne University of Technology which have delivered the In2science program to more than 90 secondary schools across metropolitan Melbourne.

Deakin Vice-Chancellor Professor Iain Martin said Deakin’s involvement would enable the program to be delivered to secondary schools in Geelong and south-west Victoria, including Warrnambool and surrounding regional towns.

“Deakin is excited to bring In2science to schools across regional Victoria,” Professor Martin said.

“This program provides secondary school students with a wonderful opportunity to engage in STEM and, hopefully, inspire the next generation of students and graduates in STEM courses and occupations.”

In2science Chair and La Trobe University Chancellor, the Honourable Professor John Brumby AO, is thrilled that more students across Victoria can now access this impactful program.

“We know that In2science gets kids excited about STEM and encourages aspirations for studying STEM at university, opening up the world of opportunities that STEM careers provide,” Mr Brumby said.

In2science is an innovative and proven multi-university schools partnership program that places university students as mentors inside Victorian high school classrooms.

For nearly 20 years, In2science has been promoting the importance of science and maths through its ten-week mentoring program delivered by university students studying degrees in STEM disciplines.

By working with the classroom teacher, mentors act as role models to secondary students, sharing their passion and knowledge for STEM and, importantly, relating schoolwork to real-world examples.

The Deakin-led part of program will be trialled among a small number of schools in 2022 ahead of a full rollout across Geelong and Warrnambool partner schools in 2023.

For enquiries about this exciting new partnership or to request a mentor, please contact Program Coordinator Tordy Rowe.