Celebrating STEM

To celebrate science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) careers, we're hosting our STEM in Schools event at 11.30am to 12:30pm wherever you are on Wednesday 30 October 2019.

This year, STEM in Schools highlights Australia's global challenges — everything from our ageing population to AI and climate change — and the STEM professionals using innovative science and technology to solve them.

The event kicks off nationally with a special broadcast at 11:30am local time. Schools may be partnered with a STEM professional or local federal parliamentarian who will visit their school. Share your activities on the day with us by using the #STEMinSchools #CSIRO hashtags on social media.

STEM in Schools 2019 broadcast

In our STEM in Schools 2019 broadcast, you will hear from our panel of CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology professionals who will share their STEM career stories.

Download the video to be played offline.

[Music plays and CSIRO logo appears on screen]

[Image changes to show text: STEM in SCHOOLS 2019]

[Image changes to show Chris Still, Host – STEM in SCHOOLS 2019, seated and talking to the camera]

Chris Still: Welcome to STEM in SCHOOLS 2019, a day to celebrate all things STEM. My name’s Chris Still and I’ll be the host for today’s vodcast. I’d like to start by acknowledging traditional owners of the lands we are meeting on and pay my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging.

[Image changes to show different images of science in action flashing by on screen]

Today hundreds of schools across Australia are coming together to meet and discuss how science and technology can be used to address some of the amazing challenges that we face at the moment.

[Different images of science in action play on the screen]

 In your classroom you may have some special guests, such as your local MP, or a STEM professional. At the end of this short broadcast you’ll have the opportunity to hear from them and ask them questions of your own. You may also have the opportunity to record your own audio podcast that can be uploaded to a special digital radio channel and be played for the rest of this term.

[Image changes back to show Chris Still and a panel of speakers seated next to him]

Here with me today I have Miriam, Susie and Matt, three STEM professionals that work in different areas. Today we’ll learn more about what STEM professionals do, and how they’re helping to solve some of our biggest challenges.

Australia’s facing some big challenges like keeping our natural environment strong and resilient, growing our future industries and jobs, making sure we have sources of good food, and keeping our population healthy. Matt, what are you doing in your work that helps address some of these challenges?

[Camera moves in on Associate Professor Matthew Hill, Team Leader, Applied Porous Materials Team, CSIRO as he answers Chris’s question]

Matt Hill: Thanks Chris. Well, my area of research is nanotechnology and it’s a very broad field, but one particular piece of technology we’re looking at is helping to protect people who are exposed to toxic chemicals. There are about 300,000 firefighters in Australia and they have some of the highest rates of cancer, and we’ve developed some new nanotechnology to clean the air when they’re fighting fires.

Chris Still: Matt, can you show us an example of what nanomaterials are all about?

Matt Hill: Sure Chris, I brought along an example today.

[Matt refers to a gasmask that is sitting on the table in front of the speakers]

This is a gasmask with a canister associated with it, and what we’ve done is filled the canister with some nanomaterials and those materials are called metal organic frameworks, or MOF’s, and they’re world’s most porous materials, they’re full of tiny little holes, like sponge maybe in your kitchen where you soak up water, we can soak up anything with them. So one teaspoon of this material hidden inside it is the same surface area as a soccer field, which gives me a headache every time I think about it, but all of that surface is somewhere you can stick those molecules that if people breathe them in it might make them quite sick.

Chris Still: Great. And Susie, how does your field contribute to addressing problems?

[Camera moves in on Dr Susie Nilsson, Biology Group Leader, CSIRO as he answers Chris’s question]

Susie Nilsson: Well, thanks Chris. My area of expertise is in stem cell biology, and the global challenge that we’re addressing is keeping the population healthy, and in particular, we’re interested in how we can age healthily. That’s not living longer, but being healthy as we’re ageing.

Chris Still: Wonderful. And Miriam, you forecast the weather. Can you just tell us some more about what your area entails?

[Camera moves in on Miriam Bradbury, Meteorologist, Bureau of Meteorology, CSIRO as he answers Chris’s question]

Miriam Bradbury: Yeah, sure. So I work with the forecasting team and we prepare the forecast and warnings for Victoria, and for all of the people who use those forecasts, whether they’re farmers working on the land, or whether they’re the firefighters who are on the forefront fighting the fires, or whether, you know, they’re just everyday people like you and me going about their business and needing to know what’s happening in the weather.

Chris Still: That’s great and also really important for Australia. How did you get into this area?

Miriam Bradbury: Well, look I’ve always been interested in the weather, I like how you see the dynamics and the physics very visibly with the weather, and it’s always dramatic and it’s always exciting, even if it’s just, you know, a passing shower, there’s so much that goes into making that shower in terms of the science behind it. Yeah, it’s always been interesting to me, so it’s really great to be working in an area where I can see that every day.

Chris Still: Miriam, can you just tell us some more about your background? What got you into the weather bureau?

Miriam Bradbury: Started probably back in high school when I was choosing which subjects I wanted to do in Year 12, and I thought long and hard about it and I settled on physics and maths, and I found them both very, very difficult, I struggled a lot, but through that process I sort of learnt how important hard work is in science. If you’re going to be a scientist you have to be prepared for hard work, but the flipside is that it’s very rewarding, so after I got through high school then in university I studied more maths and physics, but the focus was on atmospheric science, so everything that’s going on above the surface of the Earth.

Chris Still: Wonderful. And Susie, how did you get started in stem cells?

[Image continues to show Chris and the three STEM experts seated together at a table]

Susie Nilsson: I guess I always wanted to work in an area where I could see the effects of what I did helping people. And originally I wanted to get into medicine, but really I wanted to be able to take something and develop it further and allow the changes that you implement to then have an impact in everyday life, so medical research has always been an area where I could see that occurring, so I got into science so that I could work in an area improving our understanding of blood and bone marrow, and how we can then use that to help people through things like bone marrow transplants, treatments of cancers and things like that.

Chris Still: Matt, you’re doing some really important work that could help firefighters and other emergency services. What got you into that in the first place?

Matt Hill: Yeah, well I certainly didn’t start out to thinking to do that. I was always a big nerd, for a start, my mother says when I was three or four if I behaved well I didn’t want a lolly, I wanted some maths to do, so that’s… you can hold that against me maybe. And then when I got into uni, a bit like Susie, I thought I wanted to do something that would be useful and help people, and for me that was chemistry, making new molecules and new materials that can do things that we can’t currently do, and now it’s all about can we actually put that into a device and give it to somebody and have it actually work.

Chris Still: Wonderful. Miriam, can I ask you, what STEM skills do you need to work at the Bureau of Meteorology?

Miriam Bradbury: The Bureau of Meteorology there are so many different areas you can work in. We do a lot of collecting of data, a lot of analysing of that data and, of course, interpreting and communicating that data to everybody, so I think, the main thing you really need though is an interest in it and a passion for this science.

Chris Still: Susie, stem cells are a growing area, what STEM skills do you need in that?

Susie Nilsson: Similar to Miriam, I would say we have a huge variety of STEM skills in our area. Traditionally, you would think biology, but we are very multidisciplinary now, so we have chemists who make small molecules that impact in stem cell biology, we have physicists, we have pretty much every kind of STEM skill that you can think of. Similarly to Miriam, I would say that the key thing to working in our area is interest, a curious mind, the ability to ask questions and then the drive to go and find the answers and address those questions, so a love of knowledge.

Chris Still: And Matt, can I just ask you, what STEM skills do you need to work on the sort of big challenges that you work on?

Matt Hill: Well, I think like Susie said, it’s kind of any STEM skill is really relevant, and what the important thing is, is to be able to put it all together. Science these days is about big problems, it’s about big teams. Gone are the day of Albert Einstein with a pencil, understanding how the universe works, it’s all about big teams. I’m the same, I’m a chemist, but I work with engineers, physicists, mathematicians, and also increasingly with people who have other skills outside of science who can help me to tell people what I did and what the point of it was.

[Image continues to show Chris and the three STEM experts seated together at a table]

Chris Still: You made a really interesting point then about how science has changed so much over the last hundred or so years, what really excites you about the future of science?

Matt Hill: It’s, we’re getting to the cusp of some of these huge problems where we can actually start to address them. You think, in biology, just a few years ago sequencing the genome was a decadal proposition and now its days, or probably even shorter if you ask Susie. And similar, in my area, we’re going from taking months to make a teaspoon of one of nanomaterials to minutes to do that, and that means that what we were writing on the chalkboard as maybe one day we could do this, now we’re actually doing it. But lining up with it, it’s becoming more and more urgent to do these things at the same time, so we can do it, but we really need to do it fast.

Chris Still: And Susie, what excites you about the future?

Susie Nilsson: I think, as Matt said, it’s changed a lot and the opportunities of the future are endless. We’re in a digital world now and the consequence of that is everything is rapid. Similarly to Matt, I would say, you know, looking back in my lifetime we’ve seen diseases that were a death sentence, are now 99 per cent curable. So there’s been a dramatic shift, but now those shifts are happening faster and faster, and everyday a new break through occurs and we’re seeing major advances. So what does the future hold? – I think, we’re going to move to be able to collaborate more easily, because of the digital technologies, we’re going to be able to transfer data more easily, we can access things instantly and therefore, any advances get out there very rapidly, so from the bench to the bedside is a far smaller timeframe than perhaps what it was 20-years ago.

Chris Still: So Miriam, really looking forward to your answer to this ‘cause you entire job is about looking into the future weather forecasting. What are you looking forward to?

Miriam Bradbury: Yeah, look, I think, the thing I’m most looking forward to is seeing how the Bureau of Meteorology is going to work with other organisations in the future. I mean, a lot of what we do at the Bureau is taking observations of our weather, of our climate, of our water systems, of our oceans and seeing how that data changes over the years. And we know things, we know things like that the air temperatures and the sea temperatures are going to be increasing, we’re going to see more extreme weather events in the future. But, we also know that keeping ourselves as well informed as possible is the best way to prepare for the future and so it’s really exciting to think about how the Bureau can be using this information and these skills that we have to be working with all the different industries across Australia, whether it’s the agricultural industries, the research industries, you know, whoever, to be just working towards a really sustainable Australia.

Chris Still: Thanks to Miriam, Susie and Matt for sharing your expertise with us, and it’s really exciting to learn about all the challenges that are going on at the moment, but also that there are professionals with STEM skills that are out there solving them. So thank you very much for being here today.

[Image zooms in on Chris]

I hope you’ve enjoyed watching and enjoy the rest of STEM in SCHOOLS 2019.

[Music plays, CSIRO logo appears with text: Australia’s innovation catalyst]

 

 

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Meet a STEM professional

People working in STEM careers are working to solve some of our greatest challenges – how to improve social interactions for people with learning difficulties, how we manage our health, how we can solve big environmental problems, and how we understand the world around us and our place in the broader Universe. 

Hear from some of these STEM professionals below.

Kate Patterson

Kate used to be a Vet. Now she helps bring complex scientific concepts to life through visualisations ranging from still images, animations and now 3d designs for virtual reality.

Learn more about Digital Careers

[Image appears of Kate Patterson looking up and then images flash through of Kate talking to the camera, a camera light, various 3-D images on a computer screen, and then Kate talking again]

 

Kate Patterson: I’m Kate and I bring complex scientific concepts to life.

 

[Image changes to show Kate smiling and then the image changes to show a profile view of Kate talking to the camera and text appears: My Digital Career, Kate Patterson]

 

I didn’t always do this.

 

[Image changes to show a facing view of Kate talking to the camera]

 

So, once upon a time I was a vet.

 

[Images flash through of Kate with a labrador dog, Kate with another dog, Kate stitching up a dog, a dog on the operating table and then a facing view of Kate talking to the camera]

 

I worked with animals and everything and after a while working with cancer in animals it made me want to study oncology.

 

[Image changes to show a profile view of Kate talking and then images flash through of Kate working on a computer, text on the computer screen, Kate talking, and Kate writing and drawing diagrams]

 

So, I did a PhD and for that I created all these visualisations to explain my research.

 

[Images move through to show a diagram on the computer screen, Kate talking to the camera and Kate showing diagrams on a data screen and the camera zooms in on her and then the screen]

 

I guess I’d always really been interested in art and design and it was just a natural sort of progression from what I was doing.

 

[Image changes to show Kate talking and then images move through of a male looking, Kate talking and pointing to diagrams on a screen, Kate talking, and then a male talking to Kate]

 

Other people, other scientists really liked them as well and they started asking me to make illustrations for them.

 

[Images flash through to show various diagrams on a computer screen and then the image changes to show Kate talking]

 

So, you know, like Figure 1, Figure 2 in your textbook, well I started designing those.

 

[Images flash through of Kate’s hand on a computer mouse, diagrams on the computer screen, and then Kate talking to the camera again]

 

And that actually turned into a whole new career.

 

[Images move through of Kate walking with a colleague, Kate walking through an office, Kate working on the computer, Kate’s hand on the mouse, and then Kate talking to the camera]

 

First, I was making still images,

 

[Images flash through of diagrams on the screen, Kate talking to the camera, a 3D design on a computer screen, Kate and a colleague looking at the design, and then Kate talking]

 

then that moved into animations and now finally I’m making 3D designs for virtual reality.

 

[Images flash through of a headset, the image view on the headset screen, Kate talking to the camera, a male wearing the headset, and the view of the cells on the headset screen]

 

When you put on a headset you are inside a cell

 

[Images flash through of Kate standing next to the male wearing the headset, the molecule diagram in the headset screen, a profile and then facing view of Kate talking, and the headset controllers]

 

and you can see these molecules and you can actually interact with those as well almost like a game.

 

[Images flash through of Kate next to the male wearing the headset, the molecules on the headset screen, and then Kate talking to the camera again]

 

And it really helps people understand biology and disease in a way that’s immersive and it’s really powerful.

 

[Images flash through of various 3D image views from the headset, the male wearing the headset and Kate looking up, and then Kate talking to the camera]

 

I never planned on working in VR.

 

[Images flash through several times of Kate wearing the headset and holding the controllers, and then Kate talking to the camera]

 

VR wasn’t really accessible when I was in school but I’m really glad that it came along because it’s really important.

 

[Image changes to show Kate talking to the camera and then the image changes to show two males looking up and then the image changes to show Kate and two males looking at a tablet]

 

The more complicated science gets and the more people want to understand

 

[Image changes to show Kate and the two males looking up and then the image changes to show Kate talking to the camera]

 

the more important it becomes to find new ways and better ways of explaining it.

 

[Camera zooms in on Kate talking to the camera]

 

So, I love it.

 

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: CSIRO digital careers, digitalcareers.csiro.au]

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David Silvera

David develops software for humanoid robots, that aims to improve social interactions for humans with learning difficulties.

[Music plays and images move through through of a rear then facing view of David moving along a path and then the image changes to show David talking to the camera and text appears: David Silvera-Tawil, Robotics Engineer]

David Silvera-Tawil: I think STEM is already changing the world and will continue changing the world.

[Images move through to show a rear view of David writing on a whiteboard, David’s hand as he writes, David pointing at a robot and the robot moving]

Being able to understand and participate in STEM will a difference, not only to your life, but will help benefit all of us.

[Image changes to show a side view of David sitting at a desk working]

Mathematics for me as a youngster, was, was everything.

[Images move through of David working on an iPad, a robot on desktop screen, a robot waving and David shaking hands with the robot]

I loved that with Maths you didn’t have to memorise anything, just understand a few concepts and you could really solve complex problems with it.

[Image changes to show a rear view of David playing rock, paper, scissors with the robot and then the image changes to show David talking to the camera]

When they started bringing mathematics with technology and science together they started being able to create not only robotics but understand how they work in the real world and how can they actually help people.

[Images move through of David walking through a door and down a corridor, a lifelike child robot’s face, the child robot moving its arms and David working with the child robot]

I work in social robotics. So, we’re working in general with children. We do a lot of work with autism and intellectual disability and help them to interact, how to communicate with other people and eventually help them communicate with people, not only with robots.

[Image changes to show a side view of David in the foreground with a diagram of a robot on a whiteboard in the background and then the image changes to show David smiling at the camera]

If I can change the life of one child, then it tells me there is the possibility to change the life of others. It’s making a difference.

[Image changes to a show side view of David in an office talking to the camera]

With a STEM career you can create anything, whatever you put your mind into.

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: Where could a STEM career take you?, #STEMinSchools]

[Text changes to read: Australia’s innovation catalyst]

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Katrie Lowe

Katrie travels around the world to look at how to make cities more sustainable and affordable.

[An image appears of Katrie Lowe talking to the camera and a cityscape can be seen in the background and then the camera zooms in on her face as she talks]

Katrie Lowe: My name is Katrie Lowe and what do I call myself? I am an urban explorer. That’s my name on my business card.

[Image changes to show a black and white photo of Katrie and text appears: My Digital Career, Katrie Lowe, curiocitykate]

[Images flash through of Katrie talking, Katrie going up an escalator in an airport, Katrie on a train, and Katrie looking up at a building]

So, I’m actually travelling around the world at the moment exploring different cities to see urban developments up close.

[Image changes to show Katrie talking to the camera and on her left inset photographs of Katrie in various cities flash through and then the image changes to show her blog on a computer screen]

So, I meet locals, I talk to experts, I see what works, what doesn’t work, and I blog about it.

[Music plays and images move through of Katrie wearing a hard hat and hi-vis vest talking to a colleague, Katrie talking to the camera, and then Katrie working on a computer]

Well, I started my career as an engineer working in water infrastructure and that was pretty digital using things like CAD and modelling software and engineering programmes.

[Image changes to show Katrie talking to the camera and then the image changes to show various 3-D models of cities and buildings and text appears: How can we make cities more sustainable, How can we make cities more affordable?]

But I became more interested in big questions like, how can we make cities more sustainable, and how can we make cities more affordable?

[Music plays and images flash through of photographs of various cities in the world ending with Sydney and then the image changes to show Katrie talking to the camera]

Cities are fascinating because big cities are the future.

[Images flash through in fast motion of people walking down a city street, cars moving along a road, and people crossing a city intersection]

Billions of people are pouring into them creating these new challenges that no one’s ever faced before.

[Images move through to show Katrie talking to the camera, Katrie turning and walking along a street, and then her blog on a computer screen showing videos and photos of Katrie in different cities]

There’s experiments all over the world trying to solve these problems so for the last two years I’ve gone on this crazy adventure visiting cities from Europe to North America and South America just learning and posting online.

[Images move through to show Katrie talking to the camera, Katrie taking a photo with a Smartphone, Katrie walking along a street, and Katrie working on a computer and then a Smartphone]

So, I guess now my career is digital in a whole different way because I’m researching and writing and connecting with people through the internet and that’s creating real life work opportunities.

[Image changes to show a photograph of Berlin and then the image changes to show people working on computers and text appears: Berlin]

Next, I’m going to work with these programmers in Berlin

[Image changes to show Katrie talking to the camera]

and we’re using Blockchain technology to try to make housing prices more fair and transparent.

[Camera zooms in a little on Katrie as she talks]

And so, it’s a really cool idea.

Isn’t it weird if I’m saying it’s a really cool idea?

[Image shows Katrie listening and smiling]

Male: No, not at all.

[Image shows Katrie pumping her fists and smiling]

Katrie Lowe: Great.

[Music plays and an image of a city flashes through and then the CSIRO logo and text appears: CSIRO digital careers, digitalcareers.csiro.au]

[Image changes and the CSIRO logo and text appears: CSIRO Australia’s innovation catalyst]

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Karen Lee-Waddell

Karen works in astronomy and has even discovered her own galaxy!

[Music plays and an image appears of Karen looking upwards and then the image changes to show Karen talking to the camera and text appears: Karen Lee-Waddell, Astrophysicist, working with world-leading telescope ASKAP]

Karen Lee-Waddell: Our understanding of the universe is constantly changing. The more that we see, the more we’re starting to understand and know but then we realise the more we don’t actually know and understand.

[Image changes to show a CSIRO telescope and then the camera pans out to show Karen looking at the sky through the telescope and then the image changes to show Karen talking to the camera]

And so, as we discover all these new things it just asks a lot more questions. So, for every question we’re trying to answer we end up asking a thousand more questions.

[Image changes to show a side view of Karen looking through a telescope]

What is out there? Where do we come from? Where are we going? Why are we here?

[Images move through to show a CSIRO ute driving past the ASKAP Array, the rotating satellite dishes and a view looking down on the satellite dishes]  

With ASKAP we’re hoping to understand how the universe works. We’re actually trying to understand how galaxies form, how they evolved, how everything is changing over time.

[Image changes to show Karen talking to the camera]

It’s exciting. What I do is actually really exciting.

[Images move through to show a rear view of Karen at her computer, graphs on Karen’s computer display, a side view of Karen and then Karen talking to the camera]

I get to use a brand-new telescope and I get to go out there and I see what no one else has seen before. That’s the amazing part.

[Images move through to show a rear and facing view of Karen walking down a corridor, Karen looking through a telescope and a satellite dish]

So, I never really had a favourite subject in school. I actually loved all of school. I loved learning. I loved discovering and understanding things.

[Image changes to show a side view of Karen looking at the sky through a telescope]

I didn’t want to just focus on one discipline. I wanted to do everything, and STEM helped me do everything.

[Images move through to show rear view of Karen looking at a satellite, Karen looking at the night sky and Karen talking to the camera]

STEM doesn’t need to just be a single career choice. It leads to all career choices. With a STEM career you can discover anything. You can do anything with STEM.

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: Where could a STEM career take you? #STEMinSchools]

[Text changes to read: Australia’s innovation catalyst]

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Michael Seo

Michael is helping solve some of the world's biggest environmental problems: access to clean water.

[Music plays and images flash through of an eye looking at the centre of an orange circle, Dr Michael Seo talking to the camera, working at his desk and then working on an experiment and text appears: Dr Michael Seo, Research scientist and Graphair co-inventor]

Dr Michael Seo: As a scientist, my key motivation is discoveries or inventing something new which no one has ever done before which would benefit Australian and global citizens, to have a positive, beneficial impact on their lives.

[Images flash through of Michael talking to the camera, Michael putting a piece of film into a vice, clamping it together, screwing it up and then the camera zooms out to show his experiment again]

The reason why I like about STEM is because I get to realise that I could understand how daily devices work, how the you know telescopes, or how the medical device imaging works, or I wanted to know how things work.

[Images flash through of Michael talking to the camera, a scalpel working around the rim of a circle and the eye looking into the circle]

The key thing that STEM can provide is the logical thinking, asking yourself why this happens. If you’re good at science I’m sure you’ll be able to apply the same logical thinking in different kinds of fields.

[Image changes to show Michael talking to the camera and then the image changes to show a male looking at a piece of film held in a pair of tweezers]

Technology is actually developing much faster rate than the society.

[Images move through of liquid being syringed from a beaker and then being put onto a microscope slide]

And all the technology drivers are actually based on STEM subjects.

[Image changes to show a male looking at something on a microscope slide]

There is nothing at the moment which is not based on science which is driving the future.

[Image changes to show Michael bending down and taking a sample of water from Sydney Harbour and then examining the sample he has taken]

So, if you want to be the driver of the future, that is one of the key reasons what STEM can teach you to do.

[Image changes to show Michael talking to the camera]

So, I think STEM is essential.

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: Where could a STEM career take you? #STEMinSchools]

[Text changes to read: Australia’s innovation catalyst]

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Samy Movassaghi

Samy is a wearable technology expert who is imagining a world where one day you could have almost complete control over your own healthcare.

[Music plays and images move through of a rear then facing view of Samy moving along and then the image changes to show Samy talking to the camera and text appears: Samy Movassaghi, Wearable technology expert]

Samy Movassaghi: I see STEM in the world around me all the time and I find that really inspiring.

[Image changes to show a rear view of Samy talking to a male colleague and then the image changes to show a facing view of Samy]

When I was at school I really had a passion for mathematics.

[Image changes to show a side view of the male colleague]

I just liked the challenge of finding an answer.

[Images move through of Samy walking past the camera, talking on the phone, a diagram on Samy’s computer desktop and her fingers typing on her laptop keyboard]

I knew after school, I wanted to do something in engineering. Something based around solving problems, finding answers.

[Image changes to show Samy wearing a pair of goggles and then the image changes to show Samy looking up and then the image changes to show the sunshine behind Samy]

As a person living in a connected world, I’m always wondering if there’s a better way to solve all the problems and as a scientist I have the capability to create new solutions to some of our most troubling issues.

[Images flash through of Samy and another female looking at a wearable, Samy talking to the female and then Samy talking to the camera]

What I love about Wearables is that it gives us a sense of self awareness to manage our health and wellbeing and lifestyle.

[Image changes to show a wearable device being operated and then the image changes to show Samy looking at and operating the wearable device]

Think Fitbits and Smartwatches only with ability to connect and monitor health on a much greater scale.

[Image changes to show Samy looking through a type of goggles and then the image changes to show Samy working on a large Smartboard]

Imagine a world where we can accurately foresee the future, a world where we have almost complete control over our own health care.

[Image changes to show Samy writing on a board and then the camera zooms in on her hand as she writes]

STEM has given me a way to solve problems, a way to help.

[Image changes to show two females looking at a Smartboard and then the image changes to show Samy talking to another female and then the image changes to show Samy talking to the camera]

STEM is a future. With a career in STEM, you really have the opportunity to change the world.

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: Where could a STEM career take you?, #STEMinSchools]

[Text changes to read: Australia’s innovation catalyst]

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Vivek Srinivasen

With his background in engineering and deep interest in technology, management consultant Vivek spends his days asking the big question, ‘What is coming next and what can we do about it?’.

[Text appears on screen: What will Australia look like in 2030?]

[Music plays and image changes to show Vivek]

Vivek Srinivasen: My name is Vivek Srinivasen and I work in CSIRO Futures. When you start thinking about the role that science and technology can play in the future, there’s a number of different directions that you can go in and there’s a number of different technologies that you can chose.

[Image changes to show Vivek standing in front of screens with different information on them. Image then changes to show Vivek seated at a desk and working on a computer and then moves to show Vivek talking to colleagues]

One of the big challenges that I think we need to address is our digital maturity, making sure the everybody across the nation understands how to interact properly with the digital world, and it’s only after doing that that we’ll actually be able to capture some of the big opportunities we have in front of us.

[Image changes to show Vivek standing and looking at a city scape. The sky is darkening and lights from the tall buildings can be seen]

[Image changes to show Vivek seated and talking to a client about their product]

What we try to do is help our customers understand what the right technologies are for them, when they should start investing, what they should start prioritising and really unpick those decisions, which are extremely complicated and, to me, really interesting.

[Image changes to show Vivek riding a bicycle and then changes to show him in a laboratory type setting]

I’m really inspired by people who push the boundaries and push their own boundaries, particularly people who apply science and technology to create new industries, change people’s lives, or just change the way people see the world.

[Image changes to show Vivek and his father working on a 3D printer that’s laid out on a table]

A number of years ago I became quite interested in 3D printing and built a 3D printer at home with my father, and I’ve always been fascinated with learning about them and other things that I could get my hands on.

[Image changes back to show Vivek]

Since joining CSIRO I’ve been exposed to an endless amount of science and technology areas and it has literally blown my mind. I feel really lucky that I get to do this a lot, I’ve started to understand what science can and can’t do and I’ve seen unlimited amount of opportunities that can be created with the work that we do here and that’s pretty fun.

[CSIRO logo appears with text: Find out more csiro.au/seven]

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Information pack and classroom activities

More information to assist you in planning and hosting a STEM in Schools event is available in our information pack [pdf · 1mb].

If you have any questions regarding the event, please email STEMinSchools@csiro.au

Follow the day

We will be sharing the celebrations on our social channels, so make sure you’re following us on Facebook , Instagram or Twitter .

We would love to hear about how you are celebrating STEM! Let us know by tagging #STEMinSchools and #CSIRO

Why are STEM skills so important?

STEM jobs are growing 1.5 times faster than other jobs.

Solving global challenges, such as climate change, AI and our ageing population, will require STEM skilled people.  

STEM careers are diverse and include a range of skills and jobs like bioacoustic engineer, construction manager, cyber security analyst, video game designer.

The range of careers that require STEM skills grows by the day.

Continue bringing real STEM into the classroom

We have a dedicated program where we facilitate ongoing partnerships between schools and industry to bring real STEM into the classroom.

Teachers and STEM professionals work together to increase STEM skills, knowledge and confidence for the teacher through a range of activities including mentoring, career talks and hands-on activities to name a few!

If you’re a teacher or a STEM professional and want to get involved, we would love to hear from you.

Apply today.

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STEM in Schools

If you have any questions regarding the event, please contact STEMinSchools@csiro.au.