The first term has been a good start to the successful year for Engineers Without Borders. It was great to see over 80 people attend our first meeting of the term on which we talked to them about the society and how they can get involved in our outreach events at schools that aim to inspire the children to pursue a STEM degree.
The structures that our members created for the icebreaker challenge, creating the strongest and tallest structure, during our first meeting of the year
Our committee ran two workshops to raise awareness of the issues people face in some parts of the world: ‘Water for Everyone’ and ‘Power for Everyone’. Both events saw our members building their own solutions – a basic water filter and a wind turbine – from the resources we have provided. These solutions were then tested and we evaluated them to see why some worked better than others making it a really hands-on and interactive event for everyone involved!
These are some of the fantastic water filters and wind turbines designed during the ‘Water for Everyone’ and ‘Power for Everyone’ workshops
One of our outreach coordinators, Jack Malcolmson, arranged a STEM Ambassador induction event to enable more members to become ambassadors and participate in outreach activities. We held two workshops to allow several members to become involved. The first workshop was at a STEM Club. It was very motivating to see so many children interested in STEM subjects. At this point we have already managed to secure 5 outreach events which allowed almost all of our members to participate. To prepare our members for these events, we organised a few society meetings where we demonstrated both of the workshops we give as a society as if it was done for school children. The timing of each activity was shown to members along with how to best approach each of them and the resources they will need.
Since our main focus with outreach activities is to engage and inspire the kids, our other Outreach Coordinator Charlotte Wellard invited Jon Wood, a science presenter with a lot of experience in the field, to talk to our members about giving workshops to younger children.
To get closer to the Society’s goal of raising £200 by the end of the academic year our Treasurer, Francesca McKendrick, and Fundraising Coordinator, Ellie Farrar, organised a bake sale in week 10 to raise money for the charity. With all of the committee baking something, we managed to raise £60. This has put us on the right track for achieving our goal.
Our outreach coordinator, Charlotte Wellard, pictured in the guild during the bake sale
In the second term as more members gained a STEM ambassador status, we organised a lot of outreach events and managed to get almost all of our members involved in at least one, which was quite an accomplishment. Many of our them had their first ever outreach event at an after-school STEM club where the children were particularly involved making it extremely enjoyable and fulfilling for us. Some of the groups came up with really creative designs but needed more time to execute them, while others managed to make wind turbines that worked very well. Another outreach event was a double session at a secondary school in a science class, where one of the groups managed to make the best paper turbine any of us had seen and was a great way to end our outreach events. Several of our members also helped out at the EWB stand at the Big Bang Fair, an annual fair that celebrates Science Technology, Engineering and Maths and aims to inspire young children to consider going into STEM. We are finishing our second term with four outreach events organised and more than 10 STEM ambassadors trained, which garnered support for our chapter from EWB.
If you enjoyed taking part in our events or found receiving STEM ambassador training helpful, please consider submitting a nomination for the EPS Societies' Awards to help us celebrate such a great year!