Why is your company joining the STEM Alliance?
Ensuring that Europe can lead the way in developing and educating future engineers, chemists and other science based disciplines is a way to generate interest in the exciting field of chemistry and show that the chemical industry is a good industry to work for. Since EPCA is essentially a network of member companies, we recognise the benefits of partnerships, and therefore by partnering with the education sector and other enterprises through the STEM Alliance initiative, EPCA wishes to work constructively towards the same goals of promoting STEM education.
In a constant effort to convince young talented people to opt for STEM studies which will enable them to choose a variety of challenging career paths and develop professionally, EPCA has produced 3 education films: "Chemistry: All about you", "Science: Where can it take you?" & "Petro and Chemistry: Partnership for a Better Life" as well as role model films of people from within its membership, showcasing what it is like to work for an industry like ours.
Why is STEM Education a priority for your company?
STEM Education is a priority for our organisation because our member companies recognise the need to get the right talent on board to deliver innovative and sustainable solutions and to remain competitive. Europe lacks STEM-educated young boys and girls. In order to close this gap and inspire young people to opt for an education in STEM, EPCA presented its 3rd Educational film "Petro & Chemistry: Partnership for a Better Life" during the Berlin mini-MARATHON (26th September 2015). The film shows the link between the products made by the Petrochemical industry which contribute to improving the quality of life of the world's population whilst offering sustainable solutions such as access to solar energy and reduction of waste through recycling. It also underscores the importance of people with a STEM educational background in the petrochemical value chain, with a clear focus on diversity and gender inclusion – issues which EPCA also promotes broadly.
What does your company want to achieve with its support to the STEM Alliance?
EPCA wants to promote STEM education in order to convince young talented girls and boys to learn science, which will lead them to develop in a variety of challenging career paths within the chemical industry.
In this regards, EPCA wishes to disseminate its films (including its role model films) and teachers' guidelines to schools via the STEM Alliance initiative. Chats with EPCA experts and school students across Europe will also be organized in the framework of this initiative.
EPCA also wants to share the learnings of its various education activities launched during its Annual meetings including: Budapest Kids Marathon in 2012, the Berlin mini-MARATHON in 2013 & 2015 and teachers' workshop in Berlin in 2013 & 2015, the presentation to schools of XperiLAB.be® learning vehicle in Vienna in 2014 and the meet & greet between teachers and students in Berlin in October 2015 with Bertrand Piccard, President and Initiator of the Solar Impulse project, where he explained the details of the project, along with the connection that the chemical industry has with developing and innovating renewable solutions. "The solar impulse plane and project would not be possible without the solutions provided by the Petrochemical industry" said Bertrand Piccard.