QCATs Experience Days inspire school students
High school students from the Ipswich-Lockyer region will this week come face to face with robotics, virtual mining, rocket science, low emissions energy and minerals processing.
The students will be experiencing first-hand the exciting range of science and engineering careers open to university graduates at CSIRO’s Queensland Centre for Advanced Technologies in Brisbane. They will also visit one of the world’s top 100 universities, The University of Queensland (UQ).
“We have 250 students from seven schools coming to hear how our scientists and engineers got to where they are today and to see the amazing things they do,” said the chief organiser of the week’s activities, Dr Jon Roberts of CSIRO’s ICT Centre.
In addition to four CSIRO Divisions, QCAT encompasses research by industry giant Rio Tinto, and the Defence Science and Technology Organisation – and all are pitching in for the Experience Days.
“In comparison with other schools in the area, those involved in our program have a high proportion of indigenous students and a low proportion of students that go on to university,” Dr Roberts said.
UQ Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) Professor Debbie Terry said the University was delighted to host the students: “The UQ community is committed to making the opportunity to undertake a university education as widely available as we possibly can”.
“Our school outreach activities aim to build students aspirations and widen their career horizons,”
“They are part of a coordinated State approach to widening participation in higher education,” she said.
Participating students and teachers said the experience was inspiring.
“Having seen and heard what it means to be involved in high-tech research I now want to go to university,” said one student, who attended an Experience Day before the school holidays.
Director of CSIRO’s ICT Centre Dr Ian Oppermann said the week’s activities were a credit to those involved.
“School students, particularly those from underprivileged backgrounds, tend to think that university and a career in science is not for them. But, it’s through initiatives like this that we can start to open their eyes – I should know, I was born in Maryborough and I was the first in my family to go to uni,” Dr Oppermann said.
Media are invited to attend an Experience Day on Wednesday 19 October 2011.
9.20 – 11.00
Queensland Centre for Advanced Technologies
1 Technology Court, Pullenvale
Site media assistance:
Damian Harris, 0439 745 319
12.30 – 1.45
University of Queensland
Mansfield Place, St Lucia
Site media assistance:
Jan King, 0413 601 248
- Images available at: QCAT’s ‘Experience Day’ inspires school students
- Background information available at: Brisbane: Pullenvale, Qld (Queensland Centre for Advanced Technologies)