Our first STEM-specific careers fair is a huge success thanks to Qualcomm

We were very excited to work with Qualcomm, the technology pioneers who are helping to transform industries across the globe, including mobile, automotive, networking, and IoT. Through Qualcomm Foundation, they aim to invest in inspirational, innovative programs that serve diverse populations and strengthen communities.

By working with Form the Future, they hope to encourage more young people across the Greater Cambridge region to consider careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) and showcase the diverse range of job roles and industries open to them. A goal that aligns perfectly with our own STEM outreach mission.

In addition to providing a grant for Go STEM!, our first industry-specific careers fair, they kindly funded an inspirational video to outline the aims, impact and project days for Cambridge LaunchPad, which can be shown to potential companies, schools and students to give them an overview of our programme and encourage them to join. You can view this video on the Cambridge LaunchPad website.

Go STEM! 2018 was a free event that was attended by over 150 students aged 13–18 from schools across Cambridgeshire. They had the opportunity to meet and discuss future careers with leading local businesses and understand different aspects of STEM. A shortage in skilled staff is one of the biggest challenges within the STEM industry, particularly recruiting young women and people from a diverse range of backgrounds.

Chris, a Year 9 student at Comberton Village College, said:

Before today, I wouldn’t have considered doing an apprenticeship, but I learnt from Marshall Aerospace that without getting student debts I can get paid to learn skills from people in the industry. And if I’m really good at it they’ll pay for me to do a degree, which seems like a much better way of getting into this kind of career. It’s certainly something I’ll consider going forward.

20 businesses exhibited on the day, covering a broad range of sectors including technology, healthcare, engineering and construction.  Most businesses brought along interactive activities to engage the students and to showcase examples of STEM in action.

In addition to this, we ran a series of free one-to-one sessions for students offering careers guidance and advice on writing CVs and interview skills. The students were able to sign up for the private sessions on the day and all time slots were fully booked!

Oscar, a Year 12 student at Hills Road Sixth Form College, said:

I really liked finding out about all the different courses, particularly for engineering because I think that’s what I’ll be interested in. Before this event I wasn’t too sure about STEM – I really liked talking to AECOM and learning about how they designed and built lots of building around Cambridge. It’s made me think about a career in civil engineering and the qualifications I’ll need to go for that.

115 students provided feedback at the event, which was 73% of attendees. Highlights included:

  • 85% of students advised that they are now more aware of the different types of jobs in the STEM sector.
  • 79% of attendees thought that the exhibitor activities were great, with a further 41% stating that they were more likely to pursue further education in STEM than before this event.
  • 75% of respondents advised that they now understand what qualifications and skills are required to pursue a career in STEM.

Adam, Software Engineer at Qualcomm, said:

This event has been fantastic! It’s been great to meet children of a variety of ages and see how interested they are in technology and engineering. Society always needs engineers and scientists – it’s a part of everything in the world, which is why it’s so important to inspire them at a young age.

We would like to thank Quy Mill Hotel and Spa, Cambridge who provided the venue free of charge. We are also very grateful to all of the businesses who exhibited and the schools and colleges who brought along their students.

If you would like to volunteer at our future events and attract the next generation of talent into your industry, sign up to our new volunteer portal – it’s the best way to see our upcoming events and to let us know if you’re interested!

We are always keen to hear from businesses who are interested in becoming Corporate Partners or sponsoring bespoke educational events – please get in touch!

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2019-01-08T12:13:43+00:00

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