Two hundred young scientists will converge on Brisbane when the National Youth Science Forum makes its Queensland debut in January next year.
Under a new agreement, The University of Queensland will be an additional host university for the program in 2018, along with the Australian National University. The agreement opens the program to a total of 600 year 12 students in Canberra and Brisbane.
UQ Provost Professor Aidan Byrne said the National Youth Science Forum aimed to encourage young people to continue their studies in science, technology and engineering.
“I am delighted to bring this outstanding program to Queensland,” he said.
“It means 200 students passionate about science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) will have terrific opportunities to explore these fields and advance their knowledge and skills.”
The National Youth Science Forum was established in the 1980s and Professor Byrne was involved with it during his years at ANU, including his time there as Dean of Science.
He has worked to bring the program to Brisbane since he joined UQ last year.
National Youth Science Forum chair Andrew Metcalfe said the agreement with UQ would allow a wider range of experiences to be offered to all participants, both in January and through follow-up programs.
“We are delighted to welcome UQ as our second host university next year,” Mr Metcalfe said.
“We are excited about the possibilities for our science tour program and the access to industry that the south-east Queensland location offers.
“More importantly, the agreement with UQ allows us to meet the continuing and increasing demand from young people and their families, as they consider future options for study in science, technology, engineering and maths fields.”
The program is part of the Commonwealth’s National Science and Innovation Agenda.
Mr Metcalfe said current year 11 students should apply for the 2018 program from 1 March, with all documentation to be submitted by 31 May. Participants for the January program will be selected competitively by volunteers from Rotary districts across Australia.
The 2017 program at ANU this month involves 400 students who are entering year 12.
“During the program, students live on campus, visit labs and talk to leading researchers, tour industrial and research facilities, take part in debates, lectures and dinner, and build social and professional networks,” he said.
“More than 10,500 students have participated in a National Youth Science Forum program since 1984, and an estimated 85 per cent have continued on to study STEM degrees.”
The program also runs a National Science Teachers Summer School, giving science teachers from across Australia access to the latest research, valuable networks, and presentations on developments in teaching.
Contact: Fiona Cameron, UQ Communications, +61 7 3346 7086, email@example.com