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Aston makes a Big Bang at the largest celebration of STEM

Big Bang Fair Aston University
22nd March 2017

Last week (15th – 18th March), Aston took part in The Big Bang Fair at the NEC, Birmingham. 

The Big Bang UK Young Scientists & Engineers Fair is the largest event of its kind, and is designed to celebrate science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). 

Throughout the four-day event, young people were able to enjoy interactive workshops, shows, games and exhibits, as well as get valuable careers advice from STEM professionals. 

Aston University had two exhibition stands, one showcasing antimicrobial resistance, and the other teaching maths.  

“Infection Investigation” was the name of our antimicrobial resistance exhibit. The team taught children about the role of micro-organisms in infectious diseases, how diseases are transmitted, and how easily they can spread. Children were also taught about the importance of hand-washing, and were able to see how dirty their own hands were under a UV light!

The maths stand was entitled “What are the chances”, and explored probability through interactive game show activities. The main event was the famous ‘Monty Hall Problem’, which proved to be a testing challenge for children and adults alike! Visitors were also invited to take part in a 100 Straw Game, and fun measuring activities which explored anthropometry. 

In addition to the two Aston stands, Aston had a presence on the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) exhibit. Dr Kate Sugden (Associate Dean for Enterprise) and Dr Elena Turitsyna (Lecturer in Electronic Engineering) worked with a team of students to engage young people in various activities, including playing a laser harp.  

Aston University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Alec Cameron visited the event on Thursday 16th, and enjoyed seeing how many young people were excited by the STEM activities on offer. 

Staff, academics and students from across the Schools of Life & Health Science, and Engineering & Applied Science, together with members of the central marketing team, worked together to bring the stands to life, exciting young people and encouraging them to consider careers in STEM. 

Over 80,000 young people attended The Big Bang Fair. This was a huge opportunity for Aston to help inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers, and we grasped it.