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ACCIS CDT students inspire the future generation of female scientists

Camilla Osmiani and Anna Baker giving the opening address at the 7th Annual Skirting Science event. Logan Wang

24 June 2015

The 7th Annual Skirting Science day

Two third year PhD students, Ms Anna Baker and Ms Camilla Osmiani, from the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Advanced Composites for Innovation and Science, were recently invited to give the opening address to an audience of 200 girls at the 7th Annual Skirting Science day.

The event, which took place on 18 June in Weston-super-Mare, saw Year Nine girls (aged 13-14) attending from across Bristol and the South West, to meet with some of the leading companies and research groups pioneering STEM research.

Camilla and Anna, who were asked to attend as examples of inspirational female role models, used their opening speech to discuss their career progression to date, including some of the challenges they have faced along the way.

Camilla commented: ‘This event gave me a chance to reflect on my career as a female scientist and re-discover my passion for science. I tried to provide the girls with an example of what their future career might look like if they decided to pursue a scientific degree, explaining to them why I decided to become an engineer myself’.

Anna said of her experience: ‘It was good practice to explain what I do in ‘layman’s terms’, particularly to a younger audience’.

The event programme was packed with a series of fun and interactive workshops covering a broad and diverse range of academic and industrial subjects.  Representatives present included: Airbus. Arup, the James Dyson Foundation, and Rolls Royce, as well as researchers from the University of Bath, the University of Bristol and Cranfield University.

Organiser Ruth Thomas said: Skirting Science was hugely successful again this year and the girls were enthused by the experience. Camilla and Anna’s opening talk was really well received and I would be delighted if they could come back to run a workshop in their subject area in June 2016’.

Skirting Science is a North Somerset based project, organised by Soroptimist International of Weston-super-Mare, which aims to encourage girls to consider science qualifications and to showcase a diversity of science-orientated careers.  

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