Pupil who attended our Discovery Day
Midlands Science is a not-for-profit company which works to create greater interest in STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths] education and skills among students, teachers and members of the public in the Midlands [Laois, Offaly, Longford and Westmeath]. It is a registered with the Charity Regulator of Ireland – RCN 20204089.
It is funded by a mixture of public, private and philanthropic funding. Our objective is to grow the level of engagement that our community has with science, this includes students, teachers, parents and members of the general public. Our work is informed by the concept of Science Capital, which shows that the variety and quality of interactions a person has with science in their life informs their life long relationship with science in terms of further education and career choice. This means we are also conscious that some groups of people find it more difficult to engage with science and we address this through how our work is delivered in the midlands region. We reach over 16,000 people directly per annum and our work has been independently and positively evaluated and found to be impactful, creative and innovative.
In addition to our annual Midlands Science Festival which is now heading into its 9th year, Midlands Science is responsible for delivering a number of other outreach activities all year round. This includes Primary and Secondary School outreach, STEAM activities, Science With Inspirational Mentors, Quiet Science, Science Capital training and activities for Engineer’s Week, Tech Week and Maths Week, Midlands Science has built a strong and proven track record in the development of these initiatives through close partnerships with schools, development agencies, sponsors and other stakeholders.
We aim to build public awareness of the importance of science in everyday life and to increase dialogue about science and technology throughout the region. Through our network of expert scientists and skilled speakers we try to provide as many opportunities as possible for people of all ages to have direct interactions with real science. Our aim is to grow interest in STEM by presenting high-quality educational and entertaining events.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have supported our work to promote STEM education and skills in the midlands. We are working hand in hand with some of the most amazing speakers & performers to communicate the key message that science is all around us in everyday life & is a fantastic career option for young people to consider. Throughout the year we set out to show people from four years old upwards that science can be fun, inspiring & eye opening as well as educational & important for our region.
– Jackie Gorman, Midlands Science
For the first time since it was founded eight years ago, the Midlands Science Festival was this year hosted online as an immersive digital event as part of national Science Week. This year’s jam-packed festival enabled schools, teachers, parents and people of all ages to get involved virtually and thousands of people had the opportunity to enjoy engaging talks, interactive workshops and presentations in a whole new and innovative format.
In a period of increasing unease, the Midlands Science team strongly believe that it is more important than ever to continue to provide activities to continue to engage our young people, build optimism and help them to explore science and how it relates to everything in our day to day lives.
Our first ever virtual festival was a great success and we were delighted through support from Science Foundation Ireland, Rethink Ireland, our wonderful event providers and a number of key partnerships to bring a large number of exciting science events to the Midlands again this year, in spite of the current pandemic.
We explored everything from marine life and climate action to the science of Star Wars, from astrology and reptiles to ice cream making and lessons in sustainability.
Science can help us understand what is happening and also provide us with the information to make different choices and pursue solutions in the future. This is now more important than ever.
We also have made available online the Dr. Mindflip Ultimate Learning Experience as a game on the indie gaming site Itch and ran a number of short videos during the week with children exploring science in Irish.
People of all ages had the opportunity to join us from their homes to have a close-up lesson about a whole variety of different topics, all with a science twist
Midlands Science were simply wonderful in the way they supported a fantastic day of science for our students. We all learned lots about geology, our coastline and the fascinating jobs that people have in these areas. The various displays and demonstrations were perfectly pitched for our very receptive pupils. We really hope to have Midlands Science back again many more times in the future.
– Damian White, Killeigh NS