Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Inspiring Young People Into STEM - Why Is It Important?

 Victoria Allan

About Victoria Allan:

Organisation: CNOOC International
Your Profession: Graduate Mechanical Engineer
About Yourself: I graduated in 2017 with a MEng in Mechanical and Offshore Engineering. So far with CNOOC, I have worked with the Facilities Engineering Team, and as the Hydrocarbon Release Prevention Focal Point. Shortly, I will be working offshore on Golden Eagle as the Offshore Operations Engineer (OOE). 
Your LinkedIn Profile: Victoria Allan

Tell us why you think it is important in today's world, to inspire young people into STEM and where applicable, why you and or your organisation gets involved and what you get out of it. 

"I think it is important to inspire young people into STEM as ultimately, they are the future and will have to solve problems using Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Ensuring young people have the knowledge to understand our business is key to securing the future of the energy industry in which our workforce will play such an important role. Getting young minds involved from as young as possible will be invaluable to solving some of the bigger problems that we will face. 

CNOOC International actively encourages STEM Ambassadors to get involved in local communities through our outreach education and by inviting local schools in to our offices to learn more about our operations. 

It is brilliant to see the excitement and enthusiasm from the young people and to have the chance to share our knowledge with them at a young age. Hopefully, what we're doing now will inspire them to choose a career in STEM and be part of shaping the world they and their children will inhabit in the future."

In relation to the above question, in your experience, what is getting better or worse and what in your view, are the barriers to sustained success and what do you see as the best way forward? 

"Challenges still exist in promoting STEM careers to young people. I think one of the most important things to do is excite young people about the real-world applications for STEM subjects as well as to highlight just how many career options there are. 

There are also many paths into STEM careers, from apprenticeships that include practical and classroom-based learning to university degrees for a more academic route into the field. 

I also think it's important to encourage young girls, early in their educational career, to get stuck into STEM subjects. 

For me, the best way forward is to continue to have conversations with young people about STEM, get out in to our communities and show them their options as to what they could get involved with. I think the most important thing is to remember how diverse young people can be and to remember that when explaining potential STEM careers to them and show how many ways there are to get involved rather than simply the more traditional routes." 

- Victoria Allan

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