On 18 July, to celebrate the launch of the program, partners, sponsors and press gathered at Collingwood Football Club’s facilities in Melbourne for a series of presentations and discussions around the program release. LifeJourney’s Managing Director, Frazer Hughes, kicked off the proceedings as MC with a welcome to the audience and overview of the agenda.
La Trobe University’s President & Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Dewar then provided an overview of his institution’s engagement with and enthusiasm for the Day of STEM platform. Commenting, “One of the issues that LifeJourney solves that has been a problem for the sector is how to increase student interest in STEM careers and disciplines at scale.” Vice-Chancellor Dewar also highlighted La Trobe’s degrees in sports science and data analytics, two key topics covered in the Collingwood STEM Cup.
Tom Reich, Executive Director, LifeJourney International then previewed the Day of STEM platform and Collingwood STEM Cup program highlighting the different parts of the student experience from career ideation to exploring the mentor profiles.
The key component of the launch agenda centered around a panel discussion focusing on career pathways in data analytics and sports science, which showcased two industry mentors currently featured in the Collingwood STEM Cup program, Sandra Hogan a Data Analytics Specialist with SAS and Dominic Milesi, the Capologist of Collingwood Football Club. The CEO of the Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers (AAMT), Will Morony, spoke to the audience about the applicability of the program to mathematics teachers across Australia. Rounding out the panel was Amy Clarke of Basketball Australia and a current graduate student in business analytics at La Trobe University.
To cap-off the day, Collingwood’s CEO, Gary Pert provided some closing remarks highlighting his personal connection to STEM and mentorship through the lens of his daughter’s connection to a mentor who helped inspire her to take up marine biology. Pert added, “The ability for a student to see a career path, to look into a window to a place like the Collingwood Football Club and realize that while I’m doing this study and it can take me into a field like sport. It gets young people thinking differently. What careers can I build? How can I find my passion?”