Did you know that W5 coordinates the STEM Ambassador Hub in Northern Ireland? We manage a database of over 1,300 professionals with STEM skills who have volunteered to promote science, technology, engineering and maths in local schools.
The STEM Ambassador Programme is a UK-wide initiative and free of charge service to schools and youth groups, which aims to encourage young people to have an interest in studying and following a career in STEM subjects. STEM Ambassadors not only have the opportunity to enrich and enhance the learning experience for young people, but individuals who volunteer as STEM Ambassadors can also develop new skills and gain increased work satisfaction.
Christine Cartwright is just one of our fantastic volunteers on the STEM Ambassador Programme. We caught up with Christine to find out about her own experience as a STEM Ambassador.
Undergraduate in Maths with Statistics and PhD in Quantum Physics at Queen's University Belfast.
"I was born and started growing up in Zimbabwe."
Why did you become a STEM Ambassador?
"I became involved in some outreach events as a PhD student to encourage students to continue with maths and physics specifically. I discovered how much I loved doing these events and wanted to continue (hopefully) convincing young people that STEM subjects are both useful and fun."
What is your favourite thing about being an Ambassador?
"My favourite thing is being able to engage with a wide range of ages and see their passion for a STEM subject being spurred on by the activity or demonstration."
What does STEM mean to you?
"I am passionate about problem-solving. I love that buzz that you get when you successfully master a challenging problem and enjoy the opportunity to combine logic with creativity to resolve issues."
Who is your favourite scientist and why?
"This one's hard, there are loads of awesome STEM inspirers out there but I think I would have to choose Mr. Smyth, who was my secondary school Additional Maths teacher, because it was his after-school classes and his insistence on always properly thinking through a problem, which made me delve deeper and deeper into the world of maths. He is truly a humble genius whose aim in teaching was to make a difference."
Our STEM Ambassadors play an essential role in inspiring and engaging the next generation of scientists, technicians, engineers, mathematicians and technologists. If you would like to register as a STEM Ambassador or find out more about the programme click here
Christine's LinkedIn profile can be found here