The In2scienceUK programme gives Year 12 (16-9 years old) students from disadvantaged backgrounds the amazing opportunity to attend a placement with a STEM professional such as yourself, getting an insight into STEM careers.
Placements last one or two weeks and students are normally in groups of 2 or 3. It’s invaluable for them, and a fantastic chance for you to encourage and inspire young people to pursue higher education and careers in STEM.
Some of you may be wondering what to fill this time with, and others might find the prospect daunting. This article gives you some top tips to get you started. If you are matched with students for a placement, we will provide much more detail and training closer to the time
Every Placement is Different
The first thing to know is that there is no single way to organise your placement; each placement is unique. Whether you’re in a wet or dry lab, an office, a university, a workshop or somewhere else, the most important thing is to show your students what you do day to day.
Filling the time
Students benefit from seeing what your daily life is like, so a placement doesn’t need to be intensely structured. For example, you can take students along to meetings or introduce them to colleagues. There are also some mandatory tasks, such as a tour to point out fire escapes, health and safety briefings and demonstrations of PPE.
You may choose to have lots of hands-on activities where you closely supervise your group. However, you’ll likely have a small group of 2 or 3 students, so you’ll also be able to set them tasks to do on their own.
- Hands-on tasks
- Data analysis
- Scenario tasks
- Mock interview
- Hands-off tasks
- Read, summarise and present a research paper
- Attend meetings
- Visit a museum or other local facilities
- Time to work on CREST Award
- Interview colleagues
Perhaps the most important thing to remember is to enjoy yourself. There’s a reason you went into your chosen career and a reason you are volunteering as a placement host with In2scienceUK. Give yourself space to let that passion shine through!