1 October 2017
High-school children from across South Wales were setting out plans to set-up camp on Mars this week as part of Cardiff University’s annual STEMLive outreach event.
Around 130 Year 8 students from 11 schools across the region were enrolled into a fictitious secret agency, the Ministry of Enlightened Theory and Skills (METS), and guided through a number of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) activities.
From the impact of space debris, to programming rovers and building sustainable houses, the students gained an insight into the challenges and opportunities that would present themselves if they were to colonise Mars, whilst picking up some vital science skills and knowledge along the way.
The activities were led by scientists at Cardiff University from across the College of Physical Sciences and Engineering and the College of Biomedical and Life Sciences, alongside researchers from the museum.
Run in partnership with National Museum Cardiff, the aim of STEMLive is to take students out of the classroom and into an environment where they can experience real life applications of their studies.
Teachers commented that the day “inspired pupils who would not normally be engaged in science” and that it was an “excellent opportunity to demonstrate to learners the breadth of engineering and science disciplines and career prospects.”
The activities are designed to showcase that science and maths open up career opportunities, developing skills that can lead to exciting careers in a wide range of fields all over the world.
A number of representatives from industry were also present during the day, soaking up the atmosphere from the activities on show and exploring ways in which they could potentially support the event in the future.
“Events like this bring science and technology to life. We want to inspire young people to engage with STEM subjects, and providing such an exciting and immersive day of activities is a great way to do this.” Professor Rudolf Allemann, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Head of College of Physical Sciences and Engineering.
STEMLive was developed as part of Cardiff University’s RCUK-funded Schools-University Partnership Initiative.