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.
Ryan Goodier is just one of our fantastic volunteers on the STEM Ambassador Programme. We caught up with Ryan to find out about his own experience as a STEM Ambassador.
"A keen skier and I thrive for travelling. I have been lucky enough to have skied on the Rockies in Canada, and been part of a Nordic and Biathlon ski team that allowed me to train for a month in Norway and compete in Germany, Austria and France. I am a family man with 2 daughters and wife Leanne who spend every opportunity to try new things and allow our kids to get a sense of adventure. Spending many family trips away in our amazing “wee” country taking advantage of the weather (when it is sunny). Loving the outdoors and family trips has always been embedded with me since I was a child, so giving the same opportunity to our children and allowing them the space to grow and explore our amazing world is important."
7% of Americans believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows! 7% doesn’t sound like a lot, but it actually works out at 16.4 million American adults!
Why did you become a STEM Ambassador?
"During my time in post as a Career Advisor within Northern Ireland I have grasped and embraced the opportunity to become a STEM Ambassador allowing me the opportunity to deliver STEM based activities to a wide range of schools within NI. I took on the post as an Army Careers Advisor in November 2018 and instantly looked to engage and deliver skills and opportunities to pupils and students with NI schools. Allowing and enabling pupils from all walks of life the opportunity, all of which were and continue to be fully engaged in my lessons and programme delivery."
What is your favourite thing about being an Ambassador?
"Being able to engage and sell various activities to our future workforce and pupils allowing them an opportunity to have STEM as a future and further career choice. By delivering STEM activities in an interesting manner will allow young minds freedom to explore their possibilities and hidden talent, as a STEM ambassador I not only feel privileged to be part of that but by shaping, advising and making a difference to everyone involved is an amazing experience. I have much more to deliver and constantly thrive on the opportunities given to me to sell, teach and encompass the STEM future."
What does STEM mean to you?
"Through my delivery of STEM, I feel that I have built foundation blocks to the pupils and classes I’ve engaged with, with everlasting experiences on each, not only selling the STEM element but thriving on communication, teamwork, confidence, mental planning and ultimately a sense of belonging. Allowing each and every one of them to know there is a place for them, especially within the STEM environment."
Who is your favourite scientist and why?
"My biggest STEM inspiration has to be British ESA astronaut Tim Peake. Not only is he an ex Lynx helicopter pilot with the Army Air Corps who went on to become the greatest legend of all time by spending a six month mission on the International Space Station (ISS), I had the honour and privilege of meeting him and listening to his journey and experiences. Tim Peake has become an icon with the Science element and plays a huge part within the STEM voyage. This is just proof that everyone has the ability to do what they want in life and find that dream job, open yourself up to challenge and test yourself, go that extra step and make a difference, once this is done everything else should fall into place. When you find yourself within a career where you feel that it is not work and you enjoy what you do each day- this is when you have found the right career & job choice!"
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