East Lothian Council

Girls encouraged to aim for the stars at STEM event

Published Monday 26th February 18

Girls at Astrosat February 2018

Ten girls from Ross High School and Preston Lodge High School visited Astrosat in Musselburgh earlier this month as part of a Girls Into STEM initiative led by East Lothian Works.

The young people, aged 13 to 15, were invited to the headquarters of the space services and management company to gain an insight into their data and software technology, including its environmental applications, and its ‘space as a service’ business model. They heard from, and spoke to, expert colleagues from its four departments – Data Science, Software Development, Project Management and Business Analysis – about their role, their responsibilities and daily activities, and their path to getting there.

The visit was part of the Girls Into STEM initiative, a joint project between East Lothian Works, Regional Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce and Skills Development Scotland. It aims to inspire teenage girls to consider Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics subject areas and associated careers.

Melanie Shields of Astrosat said:

“We really enjoyed meeting the girls, who were really engaged and asked a lot of thoughtful questions. Afterwards, two of them approached us to discuss the possibility of work experience, which we would be delighted to deliver. Encouraging young people, and girls in particular, to consider STEM careers is massively important for the future of STEM industries to ensure we have the best minds on board and a diverse workplace.”

The workshop follows a similar event that welcomed members of the RAF at Haddington’s Town House in October, and at Queen Margaret University in May. A further event, to be held in May, will offer a site tour of the new East Lothian Community Hospital project in Haddington. The participants will find out what happens on a project of this size and meet some of the project team, and experience a real insight into the various professional roles that are available within the construction industry.

Alison Hood, Team Leader at East Lothian Works said:

“At East Lothian Works we do a lot of work with young people and support them in many ways. For example, we help them to find work experience placements, practice their interview skills, and invite them to gain experience and qualifications on our pre-vocational programmes. These STEM events inspire young women to consider different careers and pathways, and it’s been great to see them really engaging with these events, and their feedback has been really encouraging. We’re looking forward to developing this project and the opportunities it offers, and encouraging more girls to get on board.”

For more information about East Lothian Works visit www.eastlothian.gov.uk/elworks 

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