Two female students have been offered places at STEM camp, Curious Minds

Carmela, student from Marian college

Jordan Doherty

Two Brimbank students have been accepted into the Curious Minds mentoring program that inspires female students to pursue a career in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields by extending their knowledge and strengthening their problem solving and critical thinking skills.

A record 323 girls applied for Curious Minds prorgram this year, with Carmela from Marian College and Maybel from St Albans Secondary College among those accepted into the program.

This weekend the students start a four-day online intensive camp, are then mentored for six months by a female professional in the STEM industry, before finishing with an in-person winter camp next July.

Maybel, who is in year 10, is studying methods, chemistry and physics, but also loves languages, having completed year 11 Hindi and year 11 Italian. With a career in engineering on her mind, Maybel is confident the camp will help guide her decisions.

While Carmela, who is also in year 10, enjoys the STEM subjects, including maths, biology and chemistry, she is an allrounder. An avid reader who always has a book in her hands, she is also studying Spanish.

“The camp is going to be great,” says Carmela. “The holidays are coming up and I like having structure to keep learning.”

Maybel is the second student from St Albans Secondary College to attend the camp in recent years, Mai, who attended the 2020 camp, said she found it inspiring.

“We did a heap of fun activities in areas I knew nothing about, such as physics and IT,” she said. “I met so many amazing people and my coach is still really supportive.”

Fraser MP Daniel Mulino, said these programs provide opportunities for girls, especially from disadvantaged areas.

“Of the 120 students, 116 come from rural and remote areas and from low socio-economic backgrounds,” he said. “Eleven are Indigenous.

“Women make up less than a quarter of students studying STEM yet many of our future jobs will require these skills. At the St Albans campus of Victoria University, for example, we have state-of-the-art training in

cyber security, which sets up graduates for great careers.”