Twenty-one organisations will share in $1.8 million in funding for their projects which inspire students with hands-on experiences in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the successful projects under the Maker Projects: Community STEM Engagement Grants would directly benefit students across Australia, with flow-on benefits for the whole nation.
“At its heart, STEM is all about problem solving – making things better than they were before. By inspiring students to hone their STEM capabilities, Australia will benefit from a more capable and diverse workforce in the years to come,” Andrews said.
“These programs give students opportunities to consider real issues, tinker with real technology, and apply their creativity to invent real solutions.
“In a post-COVID world, it’s easy to see how these practical skills can make an essential contribution to industry and innovation in the future.”
Successful programs under the 2020 round include:
- Adelaide Crows Foundation’s STEMfooty – a 10-week program for Year 7 students connecting STEM principles with the game of footy.
- Australian National University’s STARS (Scientists Taking Astronomy to Regional Schools) – a program of visits by research scientists and PhD students in astronomy and astrophysics to primary and secondary school students located in rural, regional and remote locations.
- Ignite VR’s virtual reality workshops – a project to teach students to build their own virtual reality worlds.
The Maker Projects grants are part of the Inspiring Australia – Science Engagement Program.
The 2020 round provides grants of $20,000 – $100,000 to help STEM related organisations and businesses deliver practical STEM programs for Australian youth and students, with successful programs taking place across every state and territory.