Engineers Australia held a Leadership Conference at the Perth Arena on the 6th September.
At the conclusion of the conference, an evening cocktail event was held to celebrate and acknowledge the 8 Western Australian Engineers including Craig Power , who had been acknowledged in the group of 30 Australian Engineers as the ” One of Australia’s Most Innovative Engineers” – 2017 for his patented innovation – iSOL8 : A digital LOTO isolation system.
Each Engineer gave a short speech on what is was like to be selected as one of Australia’s most Innovative Engineers .
The focus of my speech was to use the award to endorse and support two Educational programs underway in Western Australian High Schools and inspire young minds at Year 10 and 11 levels in High School to open up the possibilities and opportunities in the STEM and Business areas.
The Programs are:
- Just Start It – Operated by Lainey Weiser – This program in now rolled out to over thirty High Schools in Western Australia , with each class supported by an experienced industry mentor . I am a mentor. The engagement and transformation of students doing this program have been spectacular, resulting in one of the teams receiving a merit award at the recent iAWARDS held in Melbourne.
- The second is the P-TECH program being rolled out at the Western Australia pilot school – Cecil Andrews College under the Management of Stella Jinman – Principal. I have been working directly with a small class of 6 students providing guidance on a “Hands on” project of their own selection; demonstrating the knowledge and use of current technology such as Laser Cutters, 3D printers and associated software. The transformation of this group into an integrated and results focused team has been outstanding.
One of the key pitches of my speech was to challenge engineers to get into classroom and work with students and teachers to provide real world guidance and make education interesting and purposeful.