150 pupils from four Cork primary schools recently attended DePuy Ireland Unlimited Company’s (“DePuy Ireland”) first-ever Virtual STEM Academy Programme event.
The event marks the completion of DePuy Ireland’s two-year STEM Pilot Outreach Programme and launches the Virtual STEM Academy Programme for the 2020/21 academic year. DePuy Ireland is part of the Johnson & Johnson DePuy Synthes Family.
The STEM Academy Programme is designed to inspire and encourage children to engage in future studies and careers in science, technology, engineering, and math-related fields.
Over the past year, the programme has reached over 10,000 Irish primary school students, teaching STEM-related subjects including robotics, 3-D printing, sustainability, and virtual reality as part of our Lego Mindstorms, Dash, and Dot Robotics, and 3-D printing programmes.
This year, the impact of Covid-19 has seen DePuy Ireland transform its STEM Academy Programme to a virtual format.
A dedicated team of DePuy Ireland volunteers lead by Susan Dunlea from DePuy Ireland’s Engineering, Science & Technology Group have prepared a bank of virtual lessons for the outreach programme.
In addition, the team has also allocated time for online training and assistance for schools and teachers engaging with the programme.
DePuy Ireland has also provided schools with equipment required to run their own STEM Academy Programmes, including 3D printers and consumables, wonder packs for Dash and Dot robotics, and IT equipment.
Teachers and pupils of Cork schools, Scoil Bhríde, Rathcormac; Scoil Mhuire, Ballincollig, Watergrasshill National School, and St Paul’s School, Montenotte, attended the Virtual STEM Academy Programme launch event, which included a video event featuring testimonials of past participants, principals, teachers and volunteers.
Speaking about the Programme, Mairéad Ní Mhurchú, Principal of Scoil Mhuire, Ballincollig, Co. Cork said “The students are really excited to be involved in the STEM Academy Programme this year.
The programme is a great tool that allows our teachers to encourage students to engage in innovative thinking and explore the possibilities associated with a career in STEM.”
Speaking about DePuy Ireland’s efforts to continue STEM outreach programmes virtually, Gary Clerkin, Global Leader Manufacturing, Engineering, Science & Technology, DePuy Ireland Unlimited Company, said “At Johnson & Johnson, we recognise the importance of creating future generations of life-changing scientists and engineers.
So far this year, we’ve reached over 10,000 children in a safe and socially distanced way. It is important for us to show all children, regardless of gender, socio-economic background and ethnicity, that a future in STEM is an exciting possibility and one that we’re committed to supporting.”
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