From The Junior Secondary
Head of Department
With Gerard Clark
BIEEC QAL ‘STEMtacular Woman’ Camp
Week 3 of Term 3 saw 4 outstanding Yr 9 STEM Students attend the invitational year 9 girls STEM camp at the Boyne Island Environmental Education Centre. This camp was a week long experience aiming to expose and engage the underrepresented demographic of females to STEM fields. During the 5 day experience, the four students undertook many impact studies and activities conducting ‘Green STEM’ which is STEM in, about and for our environment. Activities include solving real world problems such as water filtration and quality or engineering a hydraulic arm. A field studies day with the Coastal Marine Ecosystems Research Centre (CQU) staff immersed students into hands on learning understanding the importance of seagrass, sampling specimens and collecting seagrass seeds and flowers at Curtis Island. QAL representatives also support the program through activities and field studies. Students engaged with a variety of guest speakers across the STEM fields who aimed to continue to inspire students to uptake STEM subjects in the senior years and into tertiary studies.
One Student Arshiya Imran had this to say about the experience, "I was fortunate enough to take part in the Boyne Island Environmental Educational Centre’s BIEEC) STEM-tacular Girls Camp, centred on empowering girls in the field of STEM. This was a very fun experience, allowing me to talk to scientists, engineers and biologists and learn about their STEM-related careers and experiences. Highlights from the camp include their team building exercises (enabling me to collaborate with like-minded students), astronomy lessons (which enhanced my understanding and knowledge of stars and constellations) and biology classes (which included studies of sharks, sea grass, rocky shore species, turtles, and clownfish). My takeaway from this camp would be all the STEM skills and experiences I gained as well as vital communication skills."
Gladstone World Science Festival - A Blast
On Friday Week 3 Students of the STEM SQUAD attended the launch of the 2023 Gladstone World Science Festival in Gladstone. The Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre was transformed into a STEM playground, where our students engaged in a day of exploration and discovery.
Our students met with experts from the Queensland Museum Network, who shared captivating stories about their favourite fossils, including some from CQ and discoveries such as the bearded velvet fish, found off the coast of Gladstone. They also explored the underwater world in the Drone Zone, courtesy of Gladstone’s own Queensland Aerial's marine drones.
In the Tech Zone, students stepped into a new world with OzGrav and Professor Tech's virtual reality stations. They also tested their quick thinking and team collaboration skills with STEM Punks' Innovation Sports.
The festival was not just about learning; it was also about fun! Our students joined in high-energy sing-a-longs, interactive games, and dancing with Red Rocket 3. They also interacted with staff from Central Queensland University, Port Curtis Harbour Watch, and the Gladstone Region Air Quality Community Group.
This excursion provided our students with a unique opportunity to engage with science in a hands-on and exciting way. We look forward to more such enriching experiences in the future.