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Year 8 students from Roma are today delving into a treasure trove of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) activities, during a seismic event that will rock the classrooms at St John’s Catholic School Roma and Roma State College.
This groundbreaking program, delivered by the QMEA, the education arm of the QRC (Queensland Resources Council) will bring 24 budding young scientists together, thanks to support from Senex Energy.
QRC Director of Skills, Education and Diversity, Ms Katrina-Lee Jones said that these bright young minds are embarking on a thrilling journey through the depths of earth science and the boundless opportunities the energy sector provides.
“We hope this workshop will unearth a wealth of scientific curiosity in Roma’s young minds, paving the way for a future generation of earth science enthusiasts,” Ms Jones said.
“Under the guidance of experienced STEM professionals from Senex energy, students will discover the intricacies of drilling for natural gas, simulating the process by using straws and irrigation tubing to bring this energy source to the surface of a conceptual exploration site.”
Senex Energy’s Community Relations Manager, Mr Trevor Roberston expressed the positive impact workshops under its partnership with QMEA has on students’ future pathways in STEM.
“As part of our commitment to local education and regional skills development, we’re proud to bring this hands-on learning experience to schools in which we operate, and this workshop provides a unique platform to showcase the practical applications of STEM,” Mr Robertson said.
“During the second part of the program, students will examine the conditions required to observe the rock cycle in a laboratory setting, investigating the geological transformation that occurs beneath the Earth’s surface.
“Our industry needs skilled STEM professionals, like geologists, engineers, and environmental scientists – and this workshop cleverly demonstrates how continuing to pursue excellence in STEM studies can lead to a rewarding career.”
St John’s Catholic School Roma Principal, Mr Jim Brennan said the final activity of the day will challenge the group of intrepid explorers to investigate how crystal size is influenced by different rates of cooling.
“This activity gives students the chance to analyse crystal size and shape under microscopes and translate their discoveries into artistic sketches – a perfect blend of science and creativity,” Mr Brennan said.
“It will be a testament to how classroom science can come alive when applied to real-world challenges, particularly an industry operating in their backyard, and we hope this experience sparks a passion for geology that may well shape their future careers.”
As Australia’s largest and most successful industry-led education and schools initiative, the QMEA seeks to broaden student and teacher knowledge of career opportunities in resources.
The academy encourages a talent pipeline of employees into vocational and professional careers, with a focus on female and Indigenous participation. The QMEA currently engages with 98 schools and is a partnership between the QRC and the Queensland Government under its Gateway to Industry Schools program.