Girls Get Set for a career in STEM

5 July 2016

Following the huge success of last year’s event, Gloucestershire College and GE Aviation are once again teaming up to host Girls Get Set, a scheme designed to inspire girls to innovate and think about a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).

This Thursday 7 July, over 400 female students aged 11 to 18, from 15 Gloucestershire schools, will spend the day at Gloucester Campus taking part in a series of STEM-related activities, which include:

  • Year 7 Egg and Spoon Challenge – learning to program robot arms and create a mechanical catapult.
  • Year 8/9 Space Activities – including water bottle rockets and Mars Lander and Mars Rover challenges.
  • Year 10 Plane Challenge – building a plane from balsa wood and implementing electronics.
  • Year 12 Robot Olympics – programming a Lego Mindstorms robot to take part in sprint, relay, hurdles and hammer throw events.

VIP guests will include Cheltenham MP Alex Chalk and Energy UK Young Professional of the Year 2015 Susan McDonald of Ernst & Young, who is set to deliver and inspiring presentation.

The Gloucestershire schools taking part include Cleeve School, Pittville School, Tewkesbury School, Severn Vale School, Cheltenham Ladies College, The High School for Girls, Ribston Hall High School, The Crypt School, Pates Grammar School, St Edwards School, Winchcombe School and more.

Girls Get Set was launched in 2010 by GE Aviation Cheltenham to give young women a chance to learn what professional engineers do day-to-day by taking part in a series of event days, projects and careers workshops. To date it has seen over 2,000 female students take part and the scheme won both the GE UK Education Award and the GE Global Impact Award in 2012.

The vision for this year’s scheme is to ensure that all students have visibility to as many different aspects of engineering as possible, such as software, mechanical, electronics and aeronautical. This allows the students to see what a varied area engineering is and that there is something interesting for everyone. Additionally, this year has seen an increase in the number of female engineers supporting the scheme at GE, encouraging the students and giving helpful advice on career paths.

All of the students have been working on projects throughout the year, under the mentoring of GE engineers, which will culminate in the finals day this week.

Brian Fowler, Head of Engineering, said: “We are delighted to once again be working with GE Aviation to host Girls Get Set at Gloucester Campus – this time in our new engineering centre.

“Not only is it a great way to inspire young women to consider a rewarding career in engineering, but it’s a great opportunity to showcase our new state-of-the-art facilities and the opportunities available to young people and local businesses.”

A spokesperson for GE Aviation said: “Girls Get Set would like to thank all the teachers and volunteers that have been involved this year for all their hard work and efforts – the scheme would not run without you! If you are interested in finding out more about the Girls Get SET scheme, you can visit us on Facebook (GirlsGetSET) or send an email on Girls.GetSET@ge.com. We are always looking for new schools to take part.”

For more information about engineering courses at Gloucestershire College visit www.gloscol.ac.uk/engineering

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