Pres girls will be 'futurewize'
A new, classroom-based programme called 'Futurewize', aimed at inspiring young Junior Cycle students to explore a new world of career possibilities through the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths is to be rolled out at the Presentation School in Wexford.
In 2016/17, more than 2,000 students will complete 'Futurewize' with 80 trained business volunteers from Fidelity Investments and other volunteer companies and four schools in the South East, including the Pres', will take part in the first year.
Local business volunteers will have the chance to work with 13- 15 year olds in their own classrooms once a week for five weeks. Futurewize volunteers will serve to highlight the importance and relevance of STEM subjects and their links to a huge range of potential career pathways.
Students will be completing the exciting junior cycle science curriculum with their teachers.
The involvement of industry volunteers working alongside teachers will serve to help students make links between their studies and post-school careers.
Specially-trained volunteers will act as role models from the world of work by sharing their own real-life experiences as they work through the Futurewize modules, which map the four strands of the new curriculum: Earth and Space, Chemical World, Physical World and Biological World.
Linking each module to varied careers and fields of study is a core design principle as is providing extended learning opportunities so that students get take-home materials where other family members can be involved in exploring career options and discussing the relevance of STEM skills.
Jointly-sponsored by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and industry partner Fidelity Investments, 'Futurewize' is designed by Junior Achievement Ireland (JAI) and developed for delivery by business volunteers.
A key focus of Futurewize is bridging the existing gender gap in girls pursuing further education and careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths related fields.
The 'Futurewize' (STEM skills) programme will have 60 per cent female participation levels on the course.