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Ulster Celebrates National Science and Engineering Week

12 March 2010

Hundreds of budding young scientists from across Northern Ireland will have an opportunity to see at first hand some of the cutting edge research going on at the University of Ulster this week.  

As part of National Science and Engineering Week (12-21 March), the University is hosting an eclectic range of short talks and ‘hands-on’ activities for secondary school pupils .

The packed programme of events which involves contributions from a wide range of academics across many different disciplines, got underway at the Magee campus today. It continues on Monday and Tuesday (March 15 and 16) at the Coleraine and Jordanstown campuses respectively.  

The school visits are all part of the University’s ongoing drive to create a better understanding of the benefits of studying STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects and to raise awareness among school leavers of the many exciting and varied career options open to science and engineering graduates. 

Computer Science lecturer, Dr Sandra Moffett, one of the organisers of the cross campus event says it is designed to give the pupils a snapshot how studying STEM subjects can create many opening for them.  

“We have included a bit of everything in the programme to try an illustrate how studying science can open many interesting and exciting career opportunities.”   

Dr Moffett says they were conscious of the challenge of attracting and then holding the attention of upwards of 1200 secondary school pupils and this is reflected in the programme. 

“We wanted to illustrate the everyday applications of science from robotics, improving your golf swing, to forecasting unpredictable natural events like earthquakes and tsunamis. The programme also includes several practical sessions such as a ‘beat the clock’ challenge to design and build a model Formula One racing car – which is a great way to show pupils that engineering is both practical and fun!”