Initiative will widen participation and increase diversity in STEM among disadvantaged and underrepresented groups
London – In2ScienceUK, a non-profit which exists to improve social mobility and diversity in STEM among students from low-income households, has announced a one-year pilot partnership with the Royal Society which will see students participate in STEM work placements with the Society’s Research Fellows.
Beginning in January 2020, student participants will be assigned work placements with scientists, enabling them unique insight and first-hand experience of STEM careers whilst learning vital employability skills.
As part of the hugely successful In2ScienceUK high-impact programme, students also experience integrated workshops, participate in public engagement competitions and receive guidance on university applications to encourage higher education and careers in STEM.
The Royal Society joins a network of prominent supporting partners of the charity, including Roche, UCL, The Manly Trust, nesta and the Department for Digital, Culture Media & Sport.
Dr Rebecca McKelvey, CEO & Founder of In2ScienceUK commented: “We know that poverty and social background remain huge barriers to progressing to university and high-skilled STEM and research careers, so I am delighted to be announcing this partnership with the Royal Society. Putting researchers and STEM professionals at the heart of the solution is an effective way to engage and inspire young people into STEM careers, and what better collaboration than with the oldest scientific academy in existence.
“As well as being able to capitalise on the history and heritage of a Fellowship made up of the most eminent scientists, engineers and technologists, leveraging its passionate research community will be a game-changer in supporting more disadvantaged young people to gain valuable insight in to the rewarding experiences a career in STEM affords.”
Veronica Van Heyningen, Chair of the Royal Society’s Diversity Committee said: “We are incredibly excited about this partnership with In2ScienceUK. This scheme will support and inspire students from all backgrounds to pursue careers in STEM. The skills and insights offered by the sciences and maths enrich the country’s economy and environment. Scientific progress is most often delivered by the team-work of widely diverse individuals.”
To date, In2ScienceUK has supported over 1,000 students from 326 schools, with 92% of participants going on to apply to university, and 85% being accepted.
The charity plans to expand its reach nationally in the coming three years, widening participation so that all young people from low-income backgrounds have the opportunity to reach their potential.