The first 30 Superstars of STEM have graduated, following a pilot year of training, support, and opportunities to speak with the media, decision makers, mentors, students and teachers across Australia.
Kylie Walker, CEO of Science & Technology Australia, said the world-first program has set some impressive milestones in its first year, and is already starting to smash gender stereotypes in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
In just 12 months, the Superstars of STEM pilot has achieved:
- Engagement with more than 7,500 students through visits to high schools across Australia;
- 600+ media appearances in outlets such as the Today Show, ABC TV, the Age, the Sydney Morning Herald, the Conversation, the Adelaide Advertiser and Totally Wild – just to name a few;
- Significant (self-reported) improvement in participants’ confidence to speak and write about their work and their stories;
- Considerable increase in participants’ social media following, with some using social media for the first time; and
- New opportunities for participants including career advancement, start-ups, new jobs, and high profile speaking opportunities.
“We have been thrilled to see these 30 women become confident and compelling STEM role models with growing public profiles,” said Ms Walker.
“These inspiring women have made the utmost of this opportunity, and we are extremely proud to have had a part in catapulting them in to Superstardom.”
Brodie Steel, Superstars of STEM Program Manager, said the diverse group comprised women from multiple disciplines and sectors, from a variety of career stages, and included mothers, entrepreneurs, cultural diversity and members of the LGBTQI+ community.
“We are excited and hopeful of including an even broader mix of participants in 2019, to fully capture the diversity of women in the Australian STEM sector,” Ms Steel said.
“In four years’ time, Superstars of STEM will have 150 leading women as alumni of the program, and will have inspired many thousands more to consider a career in STEM.”
The next round of the program, which will run for two years commencing January 2019, and support 60 places for female STEM professionals. Applications will open in mid August 2018.
Details on the new round will be available soon, with updates to be provided via newsletter (which you can join here).
The program would not have been possible without the support of our partners and funders – the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science; the Australian Science Media Centre; and Women in STEMM Australia.
You can meet the Superstars of STEM alumni by visiting their profiles – STA looks forward to working with these capable and impressive women for many years to come.