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All Party STEM meeting

11 Oct 2017

Claire McAlinden, Director of Operations in the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences at Queen’s University Belfast, shares thoughts from the All-Party STEM Meeting in Stormont.

A packed room awaited the kick off of the September All Party STEM meeting in Stormont, Belfast on Monday 11th September 2017.

Steve Aiken OBE MLA (in the chair) warmly welcomed everyone. As usual there were representatives from all the key Learned Societies and Professional Bodies who each gave a brief update on the exciting work taking place in their specialist field. The main attraction of  the day, however were the two guest speakers – Professor Roger Downer, Professor Emeritus from University of Limerick, and Mr John McGrane, Director General from the British Irish Chamber of Commerce.

Professor Downer gave a very insightful talk highlighting the challenges facing STEM education throughout universities today, and the required changes needed in the future model, which would progress much further towards practical demonstration and application of knowledge rather than text book learning. Mr McGrane shared his perspective into the effects of Brexit on the way we will carry out Education and Research across the Island of Ireland.  Both speakers gave the audience much to think about, and were warmly thanked at the closing of the session.

The next STEM event in Stormont will be the Royal Society of Chemistry’s annual “Science and Stormont” event which takes place on Monday 9th  October.