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The program provides Year 9 and 10 students with an opportunity to engage in STEM inquiry-based projects to address real-world STEM challenges, gaining 21st Century skills along the way.

Teachers are paired with local STEM professionals to mentor them through the projects and they increase their skills and knowledge through exposure to contemporary STEM practices.

Students can participate in site visits, masterclasses, work experience and local STEM careers events. These activities will expose students to a range of different STEM opportunities and education pathways that lead to exciting local STEM careers.

STEM CPP is made possible through a $25 million endowment for the Generation STEM initiative from the NSW Government to the Science and Industry Endowment Fund (SIEF).

Program details

The STEM CPP invites year 9 and 10 students to undertake curriculum-aligned, inquiry-based projects to address challenges faced by their local communities.

STEM CPP schools can participate in a range of activities, including:

  • an annual professional learning session with ongoing support for teachers, focusing on developing the skills and confidence needed to deliver, and support students in, the inquiry-based projects
  • site visits and incursions to give students exposure to local STEM workplaces and careers
  • local STEM careers events to showcase STEM pathways and businesses
  • mentoring from local industry and STEM professionals
  • online masterclasses to build on key STEM skills and support the inquiry-based projects
  • an annual showcase event to recognise student participation
  • work experience opportunities for selected Year 10 students
  • opportunities for Industry STEM Professionals and organisations to inspire the next generation by demonstrating the real-world use of STEM skills, while promoting the range of career opportunities available to students in their community
  • in some locations STEM CPP is now offering a STEM Taster in collaboration with TAFE, with findings from the pilot included in the TAFE Taster Program findings report PDF (763 KB)Accessible text only version TXT (10 KB)

There is no cost for schools to participate. Implementation is flexible, allowing student and school requirements to be met. A minimum commitment of two years is recommended for schools to ensure the program has the desired impact.

Measuring impact

Data was collected in 2021 to measure the initial insights of STEM CPP. See the STEM CPP 2021 Insights Report PDF (1 MB) or the STEM CPP 2021 Key Insights PDF (157 KB).

2021 STEM CPP Video

[Music plays and a split circle appears and photographs of various CSIRO activities are shown in either side and then the circle morphs into the CSIRO logo]

 

[Image changes to show Narelle Archer talking to the camera, and text appears: Narelle Archer, Principal, Mount St Joseph Catholic College Milperra]

 

Narelle Archer: We have loved being a part of the CSIRO STEM Community Partnership Programme.

 

[Image changes to show a rear and then facing view of two female students walking in a classroom, and then the image changes to show a rear view of a female student working on a computer]

 

It’s brought excitement to the staff.

 

[Images move through of a close view of a 3D printer in operation, and then the image changes to show a close view of the drawing the machine is working on]

 

They’ve been able to really think outside the square and have a bit of fun.

 

[Image changes to show Lauren Klein talking to the camera, and text appears: Lauren Klein, Leader – Instructional Specialist, Mount St Joseph Catholic College Milperra]

 

Lauren Klein: Our students have such curiosity and such creativity and this has allowed them to shine.

 

[Image changes to show students working on a 3D printer, and then the image changes to show two of the female students in conversation]

 

I’ve loved watching them create solutions to problems.

 

[Images move through of a rear, facing and then side view of Calvin walking near school buildings, and then the image changes to show Calvin talking to the camera and Wilson listening, and text appears: Calvin, Student John Edmondson High School, Wilson, Student John Edmondson High School]

 

Calvin: STEM for me is helping our community be more sustainable and understanding that STEM is really vital in everyone’s lives.

 

[Images move through of Calvin working on a computer, and the camera zooms in on the computer screen]

 

We just can find solutions everywhere. We just have to look.

 

[Images move through to show a male student working on a computer, and then the image changes to show Nikie talking to the camera on the left and Shafeeya listening on the right, and text appears: Nikie, Student, Sarah Redfern High School, Shafeeya, Student, Sarah Redfern High School]

 

Nikie: It’s so exciting to live in a STEM and a technologically driven world, especially as young people today where we interact with it everyday but we don’t really know the real mechanics behind it and how it works.

 

[Images move through of a large screen mounted on a wall, and then camera zooms in on the screen showing a building type project on the screen]

 

So, it was really exciting to have that opportunity and it was thrilling to experience that.

 

[Images move through of a group of students in conversation with a mentor, and the camera zooms in on the students, and then the image changes to show two male students walking towards the camera]

 

See, I think the most exciting thing about the project overall is that we were able to collaborate with not only our classmates but also talk to many of the people outside our usual social circle.

 

[Camera zooms in on the male students’ faces, and then the camera zooms out to show the two male students posing for a photo, and then the image changes to show a close view of a 3D printer]

 

You know, it was great gathering all perspectives and also incorporating our own to create a very innovative and accommodating solution for everybody.

 

[Images move through to show a female student watching a 3D printer at work, a close view of the printer in operation, and then Lauren Klein talking to the camera]

 

Lauren Klein: Having a connection with industry it means that they see it as real and they see it as a possibility for their future.

 

[Image changes to show Christopher Guthrie talking to the camera, and text appears: Christopher Guthrie, Coordinator Business Development, Liverpool City Council]

 

Christopher Guthrie: It provides students with the opportunity to talk directly with businesses, be mentored by businesses.

 

[Images move through to show two female students working with a robotic model vehicle, and the camera zooms in on the vehicle]

 

We’re really paving the way to future generations with this programme.

 

[Image changes to show Charles Elbayeh talking to the camera, and text appears: Charles Elbayeh, National Product Manger Equipment, Lincoln Electric]

 

Charles Elbayeh: Being a mentor, I really hope that I can give the students a really good understanding of industry.

 

[Images move through of a female student operating a controller, a close vehicle of the robotic vehicle she is operating, and the two female students laughing together as they watch the vehicle]

 

It allows the students to become more engaged in schools and solve problems that are actually relevant to our community.

 

[Images move through of a male student working on a computer with a building programme, a large screen mounted on the wall, and the student working at the computer]

 

Nikie: I think after leaving this project this has really help me ease into the world of STEM.

 

[Image changes to show Nikie talking to the camera while Shafeeyah listens]

 

So, it’s definitely something that I’ll consider in the future.

 

[Image changes to show Joanne on the left talking to the camera and Lily listening on the right, and text appears: Joanne, Student, Mount St Joseph Catholic College Milperra, Lily, Student, Mount St Joseph Catholic College Milperra]

 

Joanne: I would love to consider a career in STEM because

 

[Images move through of a student drawing a diagram, the student smiling as she looks down, and an actual model next to a drawing of the model]

 

I would love to be part of the future generation that contributes a lot to science.

 

[Image changes to show Calvin talking to the camera while Wilson listens on the right]

 

Calvin: STEM is the most vital thing you could ever have.

 

[Images move through of students looking at a building programme on a computer screen and pointing to the screen]

 

With an understanding of STEM the future is limitless.

 

[Images move through to show Lauren talking to the camera, a building programme on the computer screen, two students looking at the screen, and a group of students working together at a table]

 

Lauren Klein: STEM is real and it shows them that science and maths, engineering and technology don’t stand alone.

 

[Image changes to show Charles talking to the camera, and then the image changes to show a student writing in a workbook]

 

Charles Elbayeh: Without the next generation of scientists and engineers we’re not going to grow.

 

[Images move through of close view of the student at work]

 

So, it’s so important that we teach and inspire the next generation.

 

[Image changes to show Cr Margaret Chivers talking to the camera, and text appears: Cr Margaret Chivers, Councillor Campbelltown City Council]

 

Cr. Margaret Chivers: The STEM Community Partnership Programme is exciting.

 

[Images move through of Margaret talking to students while a hydrogen fuel cell buss model moves around a track, a close view of the students listening, and a close view of Margaret talking]

 

It embodies hope and it’s hope for our future

 

[Images move through of Margaret talking to the students, two female students working at a table, and a close view of a 3D printer in operation]

 

and when you talk to the, to the students who have taken part in this STEM project they are truly excited about the future and so that, that really excites me.

 

[Images move through of two female students looking at a 3D printed model, a male student demonstrating to Margaret and other students, and Shafeeyah talking while the other students listen]

 

What I loved about it were there were, it wasn’t gender heavy.

 

[Images move through of Nikie talking while the other students and Margaret listen]

 

There were boys and there were girls and they, and there was no difference to their passion.

 

[Image changes to show a group of students walking towards the camera, and then the image changes to show Margaret talking to the camera]

 

They were concerned about their home. I, I just think our future is in very, very safe and capable hands.

 

[Music plays and the image changes to show a white screen, and the NSW Government and the SIEF logos and text appears: Generation STEM is managed by CSIRO and made possible by an endowment from the NSW Government to the Science and Industry Endowment Fund (SIEF)]

 

[Image changes to show new text: www.csiro.au/generationstem]

 

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

 

 

 

 

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2020 virtual showcase

In 2020, students were invited to participate in a virtual showcase in lieu of a face-to-face showcase (due to COVID-19 restrictions). Students submitted presentations, posters and videos presenting their work in the Virtual showcase 2020.

2019 showcase event

In 2019, students from Liverpool, Camden and Campbelltown Local Government Areas presented the work they had completed throughout the year as part of their inquiry projects at a showcase events, attended by teachers, parents, local industry and council staff.

[Image of high school students walking into Generation STEM showcase event at Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney]
[Image changes to shot of Generation STEM banner at showcase event]
[Image changes to a small robotic vehicle moving around a track]
[Image changes to students smiling with certificates]
[Image changes to Mary Mulcahy, Director, CSIRO Education and Outreach, speaking to camera]

The STEM Community Partnerships Program allows students to come up with an idea or a challenge that they've either identified themselves or that industry or local government has identified as a challenge for the future.

[Image changes to students talking about their projects while Mary continues to speak]

They then get an opportunity to investigate that and follow their own enquiry process to come up with a solution for it.

[Image changes to Mary as she continues to speak]

They also build resilience, they learn about teamwork, they learn about communication.

They learn about getting on with each other and coming up with an answer to a problem and having a product at the end.

[Image changes to a close-up of a project about water security]
[Image changes to photographer taking image of smiling students as Maice Hashem, a student from James Busby High School, starts her voiceover]
[Image changes to Maice Hashem speaking to camera]

Our project is an aeroponic desalinator, which works to challenge the water crisis and also we're thinking of combining it with our hydroelectric machine that was created by our other classmates to generate a system that was both sustainable with water and energy.

[Image changes to reverse osmosis demonstration and students looking at their projects as Maice continues speaking]
[Image changes back to Maice talking to camera]

Before we started this project, we thought of science as a pretty one-way path but we found out there were a lot of different branches and a lot of different people and a lot of different types of sciences worked together to make a lot of different types of projects.

[Image changes to people walking around the showcase event]
[Image changes to students posing for a photo]
[Image changes to students shining a torch on a solar panel project]
[Image changes to sun project and desalination project displays]
[Image changes back to Maice talking to camera]

I'm definitely considering something to do with science in the future, in my career path.

[Image changes to crowd of people watching speech by Mayor Wendy Waller from Liverpool City Council, as Wendy starts her voiceover]
[Image changes to Wendy speaking to camera]

What it means for Liverpool Council having this particular STEM project in the area is we're giving kids an opportunity to experiment with science and maths.

The future jobs that are out there - we don't know what they are, some of them - and so these sort of skills will be needed.

[Image changes to people watching a presentation as Ron Moore, General Manager, Camden Council, starts his voiceover]
[Image changes to STEM project close-ups]
[Image changes to Ron Moore, General Manager, Camden Council, speaking to camera]

Broadly, the thing that has impressed me most amongst the students is the practical nature of the challenge and the innovative way they've approached the solutions.

[Image changes to close-ups of projects about agriculture]

Both water cleanliness and food security and food production are critical things for the Camden local government area, which is one of the fastest growing local government areas in Australia.

[Image changes to Adriana Care, Chair, Camden Region Economic Taskforce on stage as her voiceover begins]
[Image changes to Adriana Care speaking to camera]

There were actually two projects that I looked at tonight from local students in Camden, where they actually looked at the problem in a very different way and what impressed me was that they basically looked outside the limits and what they can do to resolve the water and drought issue in Australia.

[Image changes to close-ups of STEM projects]
[Image changes to people walking into the Generation STEM showcase event]
[Image of students explaining their projects to people as Katherine Hannaford, Teacher and School Learning Innovator from Macquarie Fields High School begins her voiceover]
[Image changes to Katherine Hannaford speaking to camera]

I've been really enjoying seeing all the schools' projects today. I really am so impressed by the diversity of projects from all the different schools. Also, of course, I love what my students were able to create.
[Image of students explaining their projects to people]

They were so excited when they were being asked by councillors deeper questions and they would say: "Oh, I really like that. You explain more about it - I want to take it and show it to my council."

[Image changes to students describing their projects]

Because all of a sudden, what they had created in classroom had become a real thing that could actually benefit our community.

[Image changes to Kritika Kharel, Student, Macquarie Fields High School, speaking to camera]

We had a scenario and we really wanted to do something about energy, so we decided to use grey water in the house and create hydro-electricity for the entire household. It's very efficient and cheap and good for the environment as well.

[Image changes to Kritika and her classmates talking about their project]

I really like doing group work and collaborating with my team members and I also like learning new things about hydro-electricity and all these different scenarios and things to improve in Campbelltown.

[Image changes to Kritika to finish her voiceover]
[Image changes to close-ups of STEM projects]

[Image changes to Margaret Chivers, Campbelltown City Council, speaking to students as her voiceover begins]

What excited me about tonight was talking to the students and they were talking about STEM from their heart and not just their brains.

[Image changes to Margaret Chivers speaking to camera]

[Image changes back to Margaret talking to students]

The fact that when I asked them questions they gave me an answer that was STEM-based but then, when I probed, they talked about passion, they talked about vision and they talked about opportunity.

[Image changes to people enjoying the Generation STEM showcase]
[Image changes to a group of students and leaders posing for a photo]
[Image changes to wording on screen. “Generation STEM is managed by CSIRO and made possible by an endowment from the NSW Government to the Science and Industry Endowment Fund (SIEF).” SIEF and NSW Government logso appear. Final image displays web address www.csiro.au/generationstem]
 

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Delivery locations

Generation STEM is delivered in regions with growing communities and growing STEM industries. STEM CPP is currently being delivered in Western Sydney, Central West NSW and the Central Coast, in collaboration with partners such as local councils, Sydney Olympic Park Authority and RDA Central Coast.

STEM CPP continues to grow and always looking to inspire the next generation of Scientists, Engineers, Technologist and Mathematicians across the state. If you are located outside of the current active locations, please do not hesitate to enquire with the team at generationSTEM@csiro.au.

Delivery Partners and Collaborators involved in STEM CPP

  • Camden Council
  • Campbelltown City Council
  • Liverpool City Council
  • Fairfield City Council
  • Penrith City Council
  • Blacktown City Council
  • Rotary Club of Blacktown
  • Canterbury-Bankstown City Council
  • Regional Development Australia Central West
  • The Hills Shire Council
  • Sydney Olympic Park Authority
  • Blue Mountains City Council
  • Regional Development Australia Central Coast

Related to this page

Learn more about Generation STEM

To learn more about Generation STEM or to register your interest in the STEM Community Partnerships Program, contact the team.

Contact the Generation STEM team

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