GCU inspires schoolgirls to pick STEM

7 July 2017

Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) is playing a key role in inspiring schoolchildren to study STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects.

In partnership with EDT, GCU ran a three-day residential programme for Year 11/S4 students in a bid to stir a passion for STEM subjects. In total, there were 30 girls from across Scotland, England and Northern Ireland.

EDT delivers over 40,000 STEM experiences across the UK each year, for young people aged nine to 21.

At GCU, the pupils learned to programme an autonomous robotic vehicle to drive through a desert and locate a specific target in the middle of a city. The desert and city were recreated in one of GCU’s lecture theatres. The teams then raced to see which car could navigate its way through the desert and city in the fastest time.

Dr Tuleen Boutaleb organised and ran the course with support from a wide range of academic, technician and support staff, as well as help from students.

The visiting pupils were housed in Caledonian Court, GCU’s student accommodation, with the intention of giving them their first taste of university life and studying away from home.

Professor Scott McMeekin, Head of Department of Engineering, said: “It was fantastic to see the excitement and enthusiasm from the girls on the course. The results they achieved from the technical challenges and tasks were excellent. If the pupils represent the next generation of engineers, then I am confident that very soon we will all be travelling to the shops and work in self-drive cars.” 

GCU also ran an Inspire event for boys last month.