STEAM week seeks to provide students at the Academy with a broad and varied set of experiences beyond the classroom to further engage their creative, digital and scientific education. This year, teachers at the Academy organised over 3200 student STEAM encounters across 6 schools days. These included trips, visits, workshops, lectures and competitions. This was the first year that the Academy included the Arts in the programme. This represents the high value placed on the Arts perspectives and developing creative skills.
It was great to hear Professor Lucie Green reference her background training to become an Art Therapist before embarking on her physics degree – an amazing example of the blend of skills required for success, and the power of interdisciplinary learning. This year’s Star Gazing Party had students of all ages, parents and teachers fill the forum to hear Prof Lucie Green give a talk about our daytime star which was the source of her research.
Trips went out with students from Foundation to Level 2 to cultural institutions across London including ZSL, The Royal Observatory, The Science Museum and The Hayward Gallery. Workshops also took place looking on cyber security and coding languages. Engineering challenges included a Level 1 Make Do day where students had to create to a brief with only paper, card and self tapping screws!
While the UK economy has only grown 4.1% over the past 5 years, Camden employment in creative, digital and scientific careers has expanded by 34% (Camden STEAM commission report, 2017). We are passionate about ensuring our students have the opportunities to develop their skills and interests to prepare them for the future world of work. There were two separate events where students could meet with employers from STEAM professions – both events were designed to give students a personalised approach to careers education. The STEAM careers breakfast and a careers in Engineering evening. Students once again left with offers of work experience and internships and lots of inspiration for future career prospects.
Sarah York a Game Tester from Deep Mind had this to say to our students: “Well done, for participating in the speed networking event, your enthusiasm and ambition was apparent. Being able to put yourself out there and talk to professionals in the industry is a very useful skill to help you find work opportunities. The tech industry is a fast moving field, to increase your chances of employ-ability; make sure you are keeping up with the latest tech news in the area you are interested in. And try to motivate yourself to research and study alongside your classes. You will need to be able to self-direct your own studies when you get into the world of work. Such as, having to learn new tools on your own or learning a workflow of a company. Doing this now whilst in education is going to give you good practise, before you get into the industry. Find something you’re passionate about and put your all in and you will do great, good luck!”
Camden Secondary schools were challenged to enter 6th form students into a Titration competition. The competition was judged by UCL Chemistry Faculty’s Dr Victoria Hillborne. The competition was won by our very own L3 Gabriella Randall and Jimena Benedetto.
It is always wonderful to close the event with UCL Academy’s own Operating theatre live. Students were treated to the theatrical talents of the Science Faculty’s Rafael Alleyne and Tom Morgan. This interactive display saw a (willing!) student volunteer undergo complete dissection as students learned about the systems of the body.
Student feedback about the week was incredibly positive with many students recognising the huge efforts that their teachers put into organising the events. Thank you to all staff involved in the week both leading the events and supporting them to take place and to all the students who were so engaged throughout the week.