Unit hosts school pupils for a fourth year of STEM placement scheme

Unit hosts school pupils for a fourth year of STEM placement scheme

Photo of Liepa and David in the lab

Over two weeks in August, the MRC Brain Network Dynamics Unit again hosted school pupils enrolled on an innovative work-experience placement scheme that was organised in partnership with the charity in2scienceUK.

The placement scheme was tailored for pupils from local state-funded schools to support their progress into university degrees and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). During their time in the Unit, the pupils worked alongside Unit researchers and were given personalised mentoring to gain a wide variety of practical experiences, as well as to learn more about key concepts and challenges in neuroscience, medical research, and the use of animals in scientific procedures. The pupils also received guidance on university applications, wider information about STEM careers, and training in transferable skills during a series of workshops run by in2scienceUK. The pupils recorded their experiences and progress in blogs and images.

The STEM work-experience placement scheme was pioneered in Oxford by the Unit in 2016, and was then successfully rolled out across the wider University in 2017. This year’s scheme hosted almost 50 pupils in labs across eleven Departments and two Divisions at the University.

Deputy Director Professor Peter Magill commented “Local school pupils are a priority audience for the Unit’s award-winning Outreach Programme, and working with our partners at in2scienceUK, we have again delivered a range of experiences that set a high standard for engagement. Over the fortnight of activities, the excitement of the pupils, their mentors, and other Unit members really shone through.”

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