Building a website from scratch is an intimidating prospect for most people. So when G-Research recently welcomed 35 girls to their offices in partnership with STEMettes, we set them a challenging task:
“Create a web page to help companies like G-Research reduce their CO2 emissions”.
The group, aged 11-12 and from two London academies, was taking part in G-Research’s first STEM Goals Day, in partnership with STEMettes – a social enterprise that supports young women into Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths careers (known collectively as STEM).
The day kicked off with plenty of pastries and an inspiring introduction from Jennifer Byrne, G-Research’s Chief Operation Officer, who spoke of her vast experience in the field of STEM (this includes a PhD, MSc and two BSCs, all in STEM subjects). After an ice-breaker activity and tour of the G-Research offices, the girls split into teams and got stuck in to the crux of the day – designing a website.
Website names ranged from “CO2 Drip” to “Our world is irreplaceable” and all included ways of how to reduce our carbon footprints. One even had an embedded YouTube video.
A panel of G-Research employees then acted as judges and had the tough task of picking a winner; in the end it was the simply named “CO2” who won.
Prizes were awarded before the girls took a well-earned lunch break and fuelled up on pizza.
The afternoon consisted of a question and answer session with G-Research employees, followed by a speed networking session, giving the girls the opportunity to learn more about working in STEM and to speak to a range of people in the industry.
G-Research STEM Panel Q&A
“What was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome in your career?”
“As a fresh grad that hadn’t done an internship and who hadn’t touched a computer program before university, I needed to overcome the old imposter syndrome and a lack of confidence”
“How did you decide to enter STEM in the first place?”
“I went to an all girls school and they shared no classes or extracurricular with the neighboring boys school except for one: Maths club! So I initially joined Maths club in order to spend time with the boys! I soon discovered that I actually really enjoyed maths and I went on to study it at university. My university career advisor soon suggested I become an engineer – my first thought was that was for the guys that drive trains and/or control the track signalling – not for me! I soon found out more and realised what an exciting and interesting career choice it would be”
“I left school with A Levels in Art and English but also Maths and Chemistry. I chose to do Computer Science (as a STEM subject) because it allowed me to analyse and critically solve problems, as well as use some of the creativity and design skills that I’d enjoyed with my non-STEM subjects”
“How long does it take to do a piece of work in computer science?”
“We take a big piece of work, that could take months to solve & we break it down into individual pieces of work that each take between a couple of hours up to a couple of days maximum. So on a micro level, a piece of work takes about a day, but all those individual days add up to make something much larger that would be a huge amount of work on its own”
“What would you say to convince someone that they should pursue a career in a STEM subject?”
“I don’t think it should be a case of convincing people to pursue STEM; you should be studying STEM because you love the subject and you want to spend your life learning about it”
“How difficult is your job on a scale of 1-10?”
“Varies between 1 and 26!”
It was a hugely successful day!
Our next event with the STEMettes is a STEM hack-a-thon in November.
What the girls had to say:
“I really enjoyed today. It was very fun and I can’t wait for more events”
“It was magical”
Favourite part of the day:
“Learning different opportunities in STEM”
“Making the website even though it was very challenging”
Alexandra Knapp – Corporate Responsibility Manager