Wednesday, June 19, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

STEM Building Confidence For The Future

Students and teachers from a range of different Mackay regional schools gathered for the annual Festival of STEM, which proved to be a major success last Wednesday as attendees gathered to engage in the Whitsunday STEM Challenge.

This initiative explores the future of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) to prepare and equip generations to come with the knowledge needed to work with an ever-growing world of technology.

The Festival of STEM in Mackay is in its 7th year of competitions and is a range of competitions for primary and high school students including F1 in Schools™, Pedal Prix, Robotics & Drones. These events are proudly supported by Mackay Regional Council and BHP Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA).

F1 in Schools™ competition is the world’s largest STEM competition. Where students not only develop skills in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics but also problem solving, project management, communication, presentation marketing and entrepreneurism.

Mackay bats above its weight in these competitions and previously have had two teams of students' progress through the competition to qualify and attend the world finals.

Robocup has four categories junior and senior rescue challenges, soccer, and dance. These challenges promote a variety of skills that extend across a school curriculum including cooperative spirit, engineering, and IT skills, along with teamwork and organisational skills.

President of the Whitsunday STEM Challenge, Rowan Cahill said that, “the festival of STEM is all about giving an opportunity for all students across all sectors a chance to come together and showcase their abilities.

“It’s huge in the sense that these students will be looking at jobs in the future that at the current point and time don’t exist, with jobs that we can’t even foresee yet.

“The skills they learn, the teamwork, innovative thinking and problem solving is great but on top of that, as part of a lot of the competitions, they need to do presentations and interviews which means they’re learning communication skills and building their confidence.

“On the day, there was kids from state schools and private schools all gathered and working together because at the end of the day, they’re there to get involved and learn while also having fun.”

Students from all types of schools in the region gathered at the big shed, Mackay showgrounds last Wednesday to engage in innovative STEM activities. Photo s supplied: Whitsunday Anglican School

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