3M has once again partnered with the British Science Association (BSA) to deliver a packed programme of activities to inspire the next generation to take a fresh look at STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).
3M has been a leading sponsor of British Science Week – the annual ten-day national celebration of STEM organised by the BSA – since 2016 and last year became a Strategic Partner of the association.
This means supporting not only British Science Week, but additional BSA programmes to reach different audiences and further our common goal of achieving a future where science is more relevant, representative and connected to society.
During British Science Week 2023, which ran from 10 to 19 March, 3M employees played a key role in the celebrations delivering interactive Visiting Wizards science workshops to primary schools across the UK and hosting STEM and career events at 3M sites.
Visiting Wizards is a programme of fun, interactive, classroom workshops, engaging the pupils in hands-on activities to demonstrate a wide range of STEM topics. The new workshop, The Crime Lab, focuses on forensic science to introduce the principles of observation and creative thinking with fingerprint analysis and DNA.
3M employees are also in the spotlight in the 2023 Smashing Stereotypes campaign, continuing the great work done by 3M, the BSA and other organisations to challenge misconceptions about who scientists and engineers are, what they look like, and what they do.
The theme for this year’s campaign is ‘Connections’, demonstrating how important it is for career development.
As part of this year’s sponsorship, 3M is supporting two new initiatives: the Youth Voice project to publish young people’s insightful opinions on science and society and the Underrepresented Audiences Teacher Network - a network for teachers working in schools that have challenging circumstances or a high proportion of students from backgrounds underrepresented in STEM.
Youth Voice on science and society
In recent years the BSA has worked to better understand the views of young people (14-to-19-year-olds) in relation to science and technology topics through polls and a series of Future Forums.
3M’s strategic partnership will enable the results of the Youth Voice initiative to be published on the BSA’s website in 2023 to promote the findings, bringing young people’s insights to the forefront.
Underrepresented Audiences Teacher Network
This new network, representing more than 1,500 schools across the UK, runs events, provides resources and brings teachers together to share best practice and expertise.
3M will support the Network’s annual conference this summer by delivering a session to raise awareness of and celebrate careers in the skilled trades.
Corporate Communications manager for 3M in North Europe, Ros Smith, says: “3M and the BSA are united in a shared vision to inspire young people in science and provide platforms for underrepresented, marginalised voices in the sector. As part of this year’s sponsorship, we are delighted to support these two new initiatives that will progress this aim.
“We are also delighted that so many 3M STEM Ambassadors are giving up their time to run activities with local schools. These will enable young people to see a real workplace and 3M innovation in action and spark an interest in science that may shape their future study and career choices.”