Walking into the classroom, Sue Yean was greeted by gasps as the students excitedly whispered amongst themselves, “She’s a girl!” The students had been briefed to prepare for a visit by an Altona Refinery Engineer and were clearly expecting a male.
“It was nice to break down the stereotypical idea that most engineers are male for this group of kinder students,” said Sue Yean, who soon had almost the whole class professing that they “wanted to be an engineer too,” when they grew up, even most of the young ladies! “There are lots of female engineers just like me working at Altona Refinery and I hope that my visit showed this kinder class that you can be anything you want to in life and that career opportunities are not defined by gender.”
Every year, Mobil distributes Bright Future Grants to schools and kindergartens close to Altona Refinery to support the maths and science education of local students. On this occasion, Sue Yean was visiting Robina Scott Kindergarten to learn about how they were using the iPads funded by their Bright Future Grant.
“It was amazing to hear how the students are using the iPads to support a science experiment they are conducting,” said Sue Yean.
“Even though they are only four or five years old, the children are stating an objective for their experiment, choosing different test scenarios and hypothesising about the result they expect to achieve. Then they are tracking all their experiment’s progress using different software on the iPads.
“So not only are the students learning the science of what plants need in order to grow and thrive, they are also utilising new technology to predict and demonstrate what they think the end result will be and mathematics to track their plant’s progress against their expected result.”
Robina Scott Kindergarten has truly embraced the spirit of the Mobil Bright Future Grants, which is to inspire kids to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. “There’s now a whole classroom of future engineers at Robina Scott Kindergarten!” said Sue Yean.