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STEM Summer Club

Publication Date: Aug 08, 2014
 

 

A pilot project across five summer schools whereby some 200 students are exposed to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths edu-fun activities



Blata l-Bajda, Malta [08/08/2014] The Malta Information Technology Agency (MITA) has announced the STEM Summer Club - a pilot project which aims to increase students’ interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM) through the delivery of hands-on classroom activities and outings to private training providers. 

Over 200 students ages 10 to 12 from five summer schools are participating in this year’s pilot project.  The aim is to encourage them to follow a STEM study path at Form 3 level.  

MITA’s Executive Chairman, Mr. Tony Sultana, said that, “exposing kids to the exciting world of STEM studies and careers at an early age is crucial in sustaining the growing demand for such skills.” He explained some of the intrinsic benefits of this programme that include the building of self-confidence, the ability to tackle challenges at school, and the acquisition of new STEM knowledge and skills.  “STEM sectors are drivers of productivity, innovation, and economic growth and are particularly important increasing global competitiveness,” he concluded. 

Research by Cedefop (European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training) shows whereas all occupations are expected to grow by 3% by 2020, STEM professionals and associate professionals are expected to grow by 14% and 7% respectively

Hon. José Herrera, Parliamentary Secretary for Competitiveness and Economic Growth, said that, “MITA’s STEM Summer Club is a unique opportunity for students to deepen their problem solving and critical thinking skills whilst enhancing their communication and collaboration skills.  The supply of these skills is critical to the development of knowledge-intensive economies and the competitiveness of Malta.”  

Hon. Herrera explained that the development of STEM skills is a significant policy area for Malta and Europe and that the European Commission, through the seventh framework project, has established the inGenious European Coordinating Body in STEM Education.  

This year, STEM Club is a pilot project so it is only running in five summer schools: 1) St Joan Antide; 2) Inspire; 3) Kids on Campus - University of Malta; 4) Klabb 3-16 (Birkirkara); and 5) Klabb 3-16 (Pembroke).  Between them they have over 200 children (aged 10-12 years old).  Several schools and private training providers have partnered with MITA to help implement this initiative within their existing summer programmes. 

As a compliment to the in-class activities, the Institute of Computer Education (ICE Malta), St. Martin’s Institute of Higher Education, STC Training, and the Pwc IT Academy have partnered with MITA to deliver practical sessions in Robotics, Kodu, Scratch programming, Digital games and other activities at their premises.  A number of post-secondary and tertiary students have been engaged through the MITA Student Placement Programme to deliver in-class activities and create a STEM Club website.  Dr. Godwin Caruana (CTO, MITA) and Mr. Marvin Zammit (CEO, Mighty Box) are mentoring two MCAST students who are creating interactive games for the website.​​​
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