STEM4Innovationpiloted in 2020 with 22 schools and over 700 students working to develop solution proposals for Professor Fiona Wood with the support of the WA Innovation Hub, the WA Public Sector Commission, WA Health, Curtin University, and others. The STEM acronym should be read as a verb!
STEM4Innovationis an umbrella project for engagement across the entire WA community – linking schools and students more productively and relevantly to broader opportunities and real-world engagement.; it emphasises student voice and agency.
STEM4Innovationhas garnered recognition via WENHUI Award (UNESCO Bangkok and Beijing), and has the focus of DFAT, Australian National Commission to UNESCO, WA State Government and Public Sector Commission, and many corporate, community and other organisations.
STEM4Innovationis currently managed by Tim Rowberryand Kim Flintoff but it is a collaborative undertaking by the Learning Futures Network members, and emphasises real-world connection with industry, community, cultural, public sector and other educational institutions. The Curtin Global Challenge platform can be used to scaffold student engagement. There is the opportunity for any collaborator to develop and manage programs that can be offered to WA schools (and eventually Australia-wide, Regional, and Global). There is no exclusion to commercial providers.
STEM4Innovationis growing, and aiming at a series of challenges to provide diversity and engagement for any learning area – we plan for interdisciplinary engagement but realise some schools will focus on specific subjects. While all meaningful challenges will have broad focus, we’ll organise our challenges under these tracks:
- Health and Well-being (medical, health and wellness related challenges) eg. Fiona Wood Hospital Immersion Challenge; Upper GI Surgeons Obesity Challenge; etc
- Technology and Exploration (relating to Space Science, Oceans, Land, Mining, Resources, etc) eg. Curtin University Binar Cubesat project, the work of Suzy Urbaniak and the CORE Foundation, etc
- Food security, Primary Production, Agriculture (relating to food, textiles and related industries) eg. Indigenous STEM program from Quairading DHS
- Life on Earth (Living things and ecosystems) eg. Qenda Habitat Challenge at Peter Carnley ACS; John Curtin College Sustainability project.
- Education, Culture, Community, Peace and Harmony
- Industry, Infrastructure, Smart Cities, and the World of Work (including responsible and sustainable priorities around energy, production and consumption)
Call for Expressions of Interest in STEM4Innovation 2021 series.
We’re already getting things in place for the 2021 series of Challenges – while we are developing some new community challenges, there is plenty of scope for schools and other organisations to develop their own challenge offerings under the STEM4Innovation banner.
Drop a line to Kim and Tim if you’d like to take on an organisation role: [email protected].
Similarly, if you’d like your students to be able to participate in any of the challenges send us a message.