STEM Ambassador activities feedback

STEM Ambassadors make a difference! According to a recent report, pupils are 90% more likely to be interested in continuing to study STEM subjects after engaging with STEM Ambassadors.

But don't just take our word for it! Hear it from the teachers and ambassadors themselves:

'Guess my job'

The request:

The Futures Manger at the all girls school holds this activity every year to broaden the girls horizons of the range of professions that are available to women. To remove stereo-typical thinking of certain careers for men and women.

The activity:

A number of female STEM Ambassadors from a range of different disciplines. Groups of girls visited them over 2 hours in the morning and tried to guess their job then asked questions. 

STEM Ambasador feedback:

Really enjoyed the morning - the round robin of groups worked well and there was a great buzz. The suggestion to bring a prop was great and my brain in a jar went down very well! Lots of girls indicated an interest in getting into life sciences and were interested in the range of jobs, including senior management, which this could lead to. As they had to ask questions it become very interactive and there was time to discuss how they could reflect on their current skill set and look at how to develop themselves for a future careerBe honest with the students and enjoy yourself- science is fun and exciting and underpins everything, and that should always be made clear to the studentsThe atmosphere, the girls were engaged and asking questions, what subjects we had chosen and i advised to follow their passion which ever subject they excel in.  The girls were intrigued to understand how they would manage a family and work, when I said I had kids as well, their eyes lit up. So I think maybe they have thought that careers are for women without children. Go through your presentation before hand, get some practice, run it by some 12-13 year olds, visuals would have been better for me. What my office looks like the people I work with the awards I have received. It feels amazing when you’re giving back to your community you grew up in! My friends are all doing the same!!! With different companies.

Teacher feedback:

A huge thank you again for your support on Wednesday. I worked with the girls in the afternoon and the things you had spoken to them about had a real impact, they were quoting lots of things back to me when I asked them about the sorts of skills and qualities needed in different jobs. It was great to see them talking about jobs they had never heard about, a real message came across about how people should not be stereo-typed into the types of jobs they can do. The Accounting, Law and Science professions, as expected, came out as very popular and a huge thanks to the engineering and manufacturing representatives who got the girls really enthused about jobs in these areas. As I said on the day, the two hours the girls spent with you would equate to anything I could achieve with them in twenty! 

Career converstions

The request:

I will have the opportunity to utilise some Year 10 lessons when they finish their short course studies in early in May. I would like some STEM Ambassadors to come in to talk to the boys during these lesson times.

The activity:

9 different STEM Ambassadors visited the school for hour long sessions between mid-May to late June. They chatted about themselves and their work/studies and answered any questions. The school also used undergraduate students from Birmingham City and Aston University.

STEM Ambassador feedback:

The pupils were engaged in the topic. Students found the session both useful and enjoyable according to the organiser. I knew the title of activity. Each school organize careers events in different ways. I have my own plan that I adapt according what school is looking for. I had the feedback of students about the careers they would like to choose in the future. I had provided them with a resume of my studies, careers and employers. I gave them information about the courses, training and employment opportunities they can get. I explained them how to write a CV.

Teacher feedback:

Many thanks for the number of volunteers you have sent us, over the last few weeks. Whilst the under graduates we have received from Birmingham City University and Aston University have been able to give the boys a picture of current University life, your post graduates have been able to show them a wide variety of ways their degrees can be utilised in the outside world. In fact Darren was our guest speaker at last night's Celebration Evening, based on the vast life experience he has, despite his disability. I hope we will have the opportunity to invite further STEM ambassadors in to school as appropriate events arise. Such events that might be of interest to you are Careers Fairs, Practice Interviews and Parents evenings, but I will contact you regarding these next year as they come up. Again, many thanks for your help.

Practice Interviews

The request:

Every year the school holds Practice Interview days for their Year 10 students to increase their confidence in talking to non school staff and gain feedback from people in business.

The activity:

They always request STEM Ambassador support as well as finding other non-STEM related people to interview their students, 1:1, for 15 minutes.  These interviews are followed a 15 minute feedback on their performance. Prior to interview, the students have completed a letter of application or a CV applying for part-time or voluntary work.  The ‘interviewer’ will see roughly 8 students in one day.

The STEM Ambassador feedback:

It gave them an insight into what an interview is like. Insight into the outside world and real employers. How to improve CV and answers in an interview. How nervous the students were. How helpful it was for the students and that they received independent feedback. I was glad I have supported the students’ development and offered support where possible.

Student feedback:

 I enjoyed the fact that I could speak to someone with experience; it felt the same way as a genuine job interview. Good questions were asked which helped me realise a lot. The reality of life and what is important in the real world. Always be prepared and be aware of strengths and weaknesses. 

Meet the STEM professional

The request:

The Psychology and Science departments of the college have shared my interest in booking a STEM Ambassador as a guest speaker at the college for our sixth form students in the summer term if possible.

The activity:

A package of introductory psychology wrapped as criminal psychology (covers weapon focus, inattention blindness, eyewitness testimony, and a lie detector) which takes about an hour.

Teacher feedback:

Many thanks for the great session yesterday. The feedback from the 18 students that attended shows they thoroughly enjoyed and engaged with the topics and how you delivered it. I thought the car chase/leading question task was an excellent illustration of the potential flaws of eyewitness testimony and the use of volunteers for the lie detector experiment went really well. I'd like to make your session an annual event, so same time next year?

STEM club support:

The request:

The members of the STEM Club would like to meet a range of people working/studying STEM subjects to broaden their experience of careers and areas of study. Just need to talk about yourself and what you are working in or studying.

The activity:

Two STEM Ambassadors attended and met and talked to the STEM Clubs members.

Teacher feedback:

I just wanted to say a massive thank you for your time and enthusiasm with the students today. They really enjoyed the session and the fact that I had to remind them that it was time to go home is a reflection of how engaged they were. I can't believe you hadn't done anything like this before, you were both naturals! I hope we can work with you again in the future.

Curriculum support - Healthy bodies and Electricity

The request:

STEM Ambassador support for the curriculum topics Healthy Bodies and electricity.

The activity:

Talks, presentations and activities to invlove the pupils.

Teacher feedback:

Many thanks for today's session. You really are a celebrity at St Chad's! I don't think they could have been more excited about seeing you again! They thoroughly enjoyed the session. However they are hoping you will be back and it is not the last they have seen of you! I am so grateful to the STEM Ambassadors. It has been a huge success at St Chads, so much so I have now linked with the STEM coordinator at Bishop Challoner School and we have some exciting STEM projects planned together, A visit to Space Centre in Leicester, Primary STEM day at Lickey Hills, STEM club after school at Bishop Challoner, STEM Challenge day in the summer.

STEM Ambassador feedback:

Thank you very much for this amazing day. I really enjoyed talking to the kids at St Chad's and hope this meeting was useful for them or at least fascinating. They are amazing kids! If you need any other people coming and talking to them I sahll ask my colleagues from different departments if you want.

I enjoyed talking to the children so much that I can honestly say it’s the best STEM volunteering I have ever done.  All the children were very enthusiastic, motivated and are actually very intelligent! And yes, I am more than happy to come in and talk again in the future.  It was a wonderful opportunity, and thanks very much for your support.  Keep in touch.