Advancement of women in science

Active participation of IM2 in a festival for children

Within the framework of the advancement of women in science and in collaboration with the project “KIDSInfo”  setup by the Swiss Association of Women Engineers (SVIN), IM2 had its own booth at the 2 nd festival for children “Hérisson sous gazon”, June 19, 2010, at Charrat, Valais.

During a full day, the festival welcomed more than 1300 kids who had the chance to participate in 25 pedagogical, creative and/or fun workshops and 5 musical/artistic shows. This year, for the first time, IM2 joined the adventure by hosting a “Science Discovery” workshop with the main objective to promote to young visitors, more specifically to young girls, the technical and scientific professions.

IM2 and KIDSinfo members, who have for their mission to strive to motivate young women to start or pursue a career in engineering, helped around 100 participants to build an electrical game that the kids were invited to take home with them.

Hérisson sous gazon

The curiosity of the children has been triggered in a studious atmosphere. For example, Sarah, 9 year old, found out the workshop fortuitously but, she was quickly interested in participating actively, “I didn’t know what it was about, but electricity has always been a curiosity for me. As soon as I’ve seen that my system worked, I realized that it was not so difficult to turn on a bulb with a battery and few wires of copper. I’m looking forward in showing it to my parents and playing with them… ”, she said.

The NCCR IM2 and KIDSInfo hope to have fascinated a lot of children for science and arouse new future careers in engineering.

After this pretty good experience, IM2 has already submitted the idea to participate in the next event with a few other NCCRs, such as Affective Science, Frontiers in Genetics, MANEP, Climate, which have already shown a real interest.

A meeting with the five communication officers will be organized at the end of the year to consider the opportunity to setup a common participation in the 2011 edition of the festival.