News and blog

STEM: My STEMM Award experience

STEM: My STEMM Award experience

The Youth STEMM Awards Scheme is a brilliant opportunity for girls to extend their STEM learning and experience in Senior School or Sixth Form.

Participants from this academic year reflect on what they have enjoyed most about the Award Scheme.

Sarah H says:

Last year, I took part in the Youth (Silver) STEMM Award. Having achieved the bronze award, I decided to take the next step, and this led to me experiencing even more exciting events and experiments.  

One of the activities I did for the award was attend the ‘Big Biology Day’ hosted by Hills Road Sixth Form College, which was really enjoyable due to the large variety of options and stalls to explore. As well as exploring the various stalls which were mainly but not restricted to Biology, I was able to partake in running our own St Mary’s School, Cambridge stall, on which we ran experiments. These included, for example, removing lactose from milk. All the experiments were engaging and interesting for both us, and the people who participated.  

Becoming involved in the STEMM Award gave me a reason to attend more science events as well as throw myself into school-run extra-curricular events and trips - for example the school trip to ‘Electric Mountain’ hydroelectric power plant in Llanberis which I greatly enjoyed and was inspiring.

Having this added motivation to explore the varied field of STEMM has meant I have learnt more about my future career options. Sarah H.

Maria K says:

As part of extra-curricular opportunities at St Mary’s, I had the opportunity to take part in the Youth STEMM award programme and achieve a bronze level award. As a result of doing Maths, Biology and Chemistry for A Levels, the award acted as an incentive for me to develop my understanding and knowledge of these subjects beyond the A Level syllabus.

I was motivated to attend many fascinating lectures, for example I went to a lecture on the adolescent brain in which we looked at the changes that occur in the brain during the period of adolescence. I also read many books and articles surrounding the STEMM sector, for me this was specifically revolved around medicine. 

As an aspiring medic, I have gained lots of useful skills and knowledge that I am certain that I will be able to utilise in the future, To illustrate, through working in many groups and with people of varying ages (through my volunteering and other activities), I have developed ways to communicate efficiently with those I work with.  

Overall, being able to part take in the Youth STEMM Award has been very rewarding and definitely most enjoyable.

Sophie C-B says:

I joined St Mary's in Year 11 and I started the award in Year 12. The aim of the Youth STEMM Award is to ignite passion and curiosity, and at the same time to help us develop skills and knowledge of scientific subjects.

I joined it [the Award] at first because I thought it would be good for my university application, however I have learnt much from it, and I have worked hard to help inspire younger students.

Using STEM subjects really makes a difference when it comes to seeing the enjoyment and real-life applications of subjects that are dominated by men.

St Mary’s works hard to encourage us to consider a career in STEM in the future.

Through my Bronze Youth STEMM Award I participated in the Senior Maths Challenge, and I also worked on a PowerPoint to inform students about augmented reality and virtual reality. We helped a teacher to determine unknown compounds using flame tests to get it ready for their next lesson.

I participated in various activities and events like the Big Biology Day and the Cambridge Science Festival. I also did an engineering presentation in an assembly, and had a placement with an engineering company, which also valued my participation in the STEMM award.

Through completing this award, I have engaged with my fellow students and the public, developing my skills and knowledge, shaping my future and hopefully inspiring the next generation.

STEMM Award at St Mary's
Return to Magnolian 2020