Girlguiding gathers for massive STEM adventure in Ely

Girls and young women from all over Cambridgeshire met on Saturday 1 February 2020 for Girlguiding Cambridgeshire East’s first large scale STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) event. Over 1000 girls, leaders and volunteers converged on Ely College for the inaugural STEM Day.

The girls, aged 5-18, enjoyed a day of hands-on activities, exciting experiments, cool construction, exhilarating engineering and marvellous maths! Activities on offer included robot demonstrations, paper tower engineering, and pinhole cameras. There was something for everyone from our youngest members, Rainbows, aged 5-7 years, up to our oldest girls in Rangers, aged 14-18 years.

The day was supported financially and with volunteers by a host of local science and technology firms, including Mundipharma, TTP (The Technology Partnership), Team Consulting and geo, opening up the world of science to the girls.

Demonstrations included talks from YouTube star and inventor Ruth Amos, rocket building with the Cambridge Science Centre, and welding with chocolate with The Welding Institute!

Jessie, 12, from 4th Ely Guides said, “the best things have been strategic games, learning how to win rock, paper, scissors and trying out robot coding.”

Miriam, 5, from 1st Cherry Hinton Rainbows in Cambridge loved the pH testing, “I liked testing different liquids to make colours and learning how to be an inventor when I’m big.”

Holli Bielby, Outdoor & Adventure Coordinator for Girlguiding Cambridgeshire East said, “Our team of volunteers have been working tirelessly for the past year to make this event a success. I am delighted to see so many Girlguiding members from our county engaging in such a huge range of STEM activities today. Our aim for the STEM day was to inspire girls and our STEM ambassadors, exhibitors, providers and volunteers today have really showcased that girls can do anything!”

Lisa Taylor from Mundipharma said, “We are delighted to have been able to support this amazing day! These girls and young women are the future of STEM. Who knows, one day they could be our future colleagues to help us To Move Medicine Forward.”

Susy Hallewell of TTP said, “TTP are delighted to support the Cambs East STEM Day. Encouraging young girls to explore STEM subjects, to be curious and excited, and to know that a career within STEM is open to them, is of absolute importance.”

Adventures like this are just part of the range of activities open to girls and young women through Girlguiding, which gives them their own space to grow in confidence, raise their aspirations and have fun.

Learning about cells at STEM day Programming a robot at STEM day

Learning about pH, acids and alkali with Astra Zeneca at STEM Day Rainbows and Brownies do civil engineering with Lego at STEM day Rainbows build strong structures at STEM day