Opportunities through technology

GRLC's Julie Fryman and Kirstie Irwin with the STEM technology. (Ivan Kemp) 349554_01

By Jena Carr

The Brainary’s Regional Youth STEM Project has wrapped up after giving Geelong’s youth the chance to experiment with technology.

The Geelong-based company secured a $100,000 federal grant last year for the 12-month program and delivered close to 80 free coding and robotics sessions for young people across the region.

Sam Kingsley managed the development of the program’s contents and said the sessions, which were run across Geelong Regional Library Corporation’s (GRLC) site and the Kitjarra Centre, went well.

“The insight is that there’s a strong demand from the community for STEM technology education and there’s a big appetite for that,” he said.

“It was really exciting for participants to get their hands on different and emerging technologies to see the opportunities within that space.

“There’s really a lot of opportunity for the next generation coming through in that space… Taking it from the classroom and then out into the real world, I think was really cool.”

The program allowed Geelong’s youth to experiment with writing code, programming robots, designing and printing 3D objects and working with virtual reality.

Mr Kingsley said The Brainery donated technology to GRLC and the Kitjarra Centre to allow young people to continue exploring many ways they could use technology.

“There are many crossovers between technology and our lives, but if you don’t know what’s out there, it’s hard to take advantage of those opportunities.

“Breaking down that barrier to begin with and showcasing that robotics are being used in a whole host of industries is a wonderful opportunity.

“If you don’t have that experience or opportunity to see what’s out there and what’s going on outside of your region or outside of your bubble, then don’t know what opportunities are available to you.”